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Expert Witness Explains the Harmful Effects of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning and How to Recover Damages

Carbon monoxide may lead to poisoning, injury and death when someone has been exposed to too much of the gas. It is colorless and odorless, so it cannot be see or smelled but it may be see in smoke. However, because it weighs less than oxygen, it spreads quickly.

When vehicles or other machines are running, there is the potential that this substance may be leaking into the air someone breaths. This occurs when there is not enough oxygen used during the burning of fossil fuels. This means that there is incomplete combustion and water, head and carbon dioxide mix together which creates the dangerous carbon monoxide.

This type of poisoning is extremely hazardous to the body, and it could lead to severe illness, injury or death. It may cause flu like symptoms such as fatigue, vomiting, dizziness and confusion and similar concerns. When someone has prolonged exposure he or she could have uncontrolled bouts of vomiting, a loss of consciousness or fainting spells. Severe symptoms often include brain damage, irregular heat beats, difficulties in breathing, menstrual fluctuations that could cause serious issues to pregnant
women and eventually an individual dies. Unfortunately, this illness is misdiagnosed often due to the similar aspects it has to other ailments.

The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide

While the symptoms of poisoning with this substance are clear, it is not fully understandable why this gas is so dangerous. This is often the case when the issue is with something entirely internal. The carbon monoxide bonds with hemoglobin which causes a lack of oxygen to the cells in the body. Because so much oxygen is needed by the body to breathe and regulate other systems’ activity, when the gas stops this process, various parts of the body are unable to continue their normal actions. A shortage of oxygen then could lead to the many complications listed for a poisoning of this substance. Even small doses of carbon monoxide are hazardous to the health of an individual. It is possible that irreversible damage may occur through exposure.

When higher concentrations of this dangerous gas have been consumed, the person involved usually dies within no more than five minutes. While lower doses of carbon monoxide may lead to a prolonged period that may not show any symptoms, it is possible that the individual may still experience negative health conditions after an eight hour period of a small concentration. Unfortunately, carbon monoxide detectors do not alarm unless a great quantity of this substance is in the air. This means that a prolonged exposure to lower amounts may be poisoning an individual or family with no detection method other than symptoms occurring. This means that a person may experience brain damage, nerve injuries and heart irregularities that are diagnosed as other illnesses.

The Expert Witness Testimony and Recovery of Damages

When someone has been harmed by the detrimental effects of carbon monoxide, it is important to determine who is liable. While the lawyer assists in revealing the culprit or at-fault party, the expert witness is able to detail through a report and examination of the situation just how the symptoms resulted in damage to the body that is either irreversible or that lead to additional or further injuries. The exposure may have been due to one or multiple issues, and the professional witness is able to explain the consequences and the long-term medical care needed to assist the victim. The dangerous consequences may be summed up through how danger levels are determined, if medical malpractice exists, why carbon monoxide poisoning should have been considered and other factors that may have led to the proper treatment being received.

Damages that may be recovered as usually similar to personal injury cases. These usually include the entirety of medical treatment costs, future expenses incurred through health care, a loss of income due to the inability to work while recovering, pain and suffering as well as certain other concerns that may be revealed during the case. Through the testimony, the expert witness is often able to explain why damages must be obtained so that the individual affected by the incident may become whole. While this may take time, receiving the reasonable and fair compensation for the injuries is necessary. Working in conjunction with the lawyer, this professional is able to fully and clearly list the reasons monetary payouts are necessary. In certain situations, the victim becomes disabled due to severe injury or extensive harm to the brain, nervous system or heart. When this affects the whole family, an increase amount is essential.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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