St George’s launches study on the impact of carbon monoxide on the brain
St George’s examines the neurological effects carbon monoxide (CO) exposure has on the brain in a new study launching in December.
The study, which is being led by Dr Peter Jenkins, will recruit 50 participants who will undergo a thorough assessment including memory tests, blood tests sensitive to damage to brain cells and effects on behaviour and wellbeing.
St George’s was awarded a grant from the Gas Safety Trust to specifically research how exposure to CO, which can come from a range of carbon-based fuel sources, including faulty cooking or heating appliances, can cause debilitating neurological symptoms.
Such symptoms may include headaches, dizziness, unsteadiness and problems with concentration and thinking.
Dr Peter Jenkins, Neurology Consultant at St George’s, said: “The impact of carbon monoxide exposure on the brain is under recognised and can cause debilitating symptoms. This study is a great opportunity to explore how carbon monoxide exposure impacts on brain function and to investigate whether blood tests can be used to identify brain injury following exposure”.
Chris Bielby, Chair of the Gas Safety Trust, added: “We are delighted to support this research on this vital area. The long-term effects of carbon monoxide exposure can be life altering and we hope that this project will lead to better treatment and therapeutics, as well as better diagnosis”.
If you are interested in taking part and have had confirmed exposure to carbon monoxide poisoning in the last two years, please contact the study group at COstudy@stgeorges.nhs.uk.