Carbon monoxide poisoning in the United Arab Emirates

Juma M. Al Kaabi, Andrew D. Wheatley, Peter Barss, Al Shamsi Mariam, Anis Lababidi, Ahmed Mushtaq

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is rare in the Arabian Peninsula and occurs almost exclusively during the winter months. Knowledge and perception of the hazards of carbon monoxide is limited. Migrant workers from warm climates appear particularly at risk. We investigated 46 cases of carbon monoxide poisoning presenting at emergency departments from 2007-2009 of the two main hospitals in Al Ain city, United Arab Emirates. Interviews, hospital records, and administered questionnaires were used to collect the data. Among the 46 cases investigated, 24 (52%) were males. Foreign nationals compromised 80% of the cases and the incidence was 3.1 cases per 100,000 residents per year. Burning charcoal in poorly ventilated residences was the predominant source of the carbon monoxide poisoning. Almost all cases (98%) were admitted during the winter months, most in the early morning hours. Carboxyhaemoglobin (COHb) was significantly increased in cases with loss of consciousness and depressed consciousness. There were no reported fatalities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202-209
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Arabian Peninsula
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Charcoal grills
  • United Arab Emirates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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