Question of the Day – Thursday September 13, 2018

Question – Bilateral globus pallidus lesions have been reported to be associated with severe carbon monoxide poisoning. What has been posited as potential causes for the development of these lesions?

Answer – The cited article notes “The development of this lesion has been correlated with local blood flow to the globus pallidus, metabolic acidosis and hypotension during CO poisoning in animal models. Globus pallidus lesions may be delayed for as long as several days after initial presentation and may resolve with time……. Although globus pallidus lesions are not pathognomonic for CO poisoning and may be seen in other intoxications, such as methanol or hydrogen sulfide poisoning, their presence should alert the clinician to the possibility of CO exposure. (Kao LW and Nanagas KA. Toxicity associated with carbon monoxide. 2006 Clin Lab Med 26:99-125)