A woman is claiming that her child’s Easy Bake Oven gave her family carbon monoxide poisoning. This is why people shouldn’t use Google to self diagnose medical problems. The Easy Bake oven uses a lightbulb to generate heat. There is no open flame, thus no combustion. Since carbon monoxide is a product of incomplete combustion, this isn’t the culprit.

The second issue here is that a pulse oximeter allegedly showed 89 percent. This is not caused by CO for technical reasons. See, a pulse oximeter works because hemoglobin that is bound to another molecule absorbs certain frequencies of red light, while hemoglobin that is not bound to another molecule does not. The pulse oximeter shines two frequencies of red light through the body, and measures how much one is absorbed over the other. The result is used to calculate the proportion of bound hemoglobin versus unbound that is passing through the beam.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is caused because CO binds to hemoglobin 200 times more readily than does oxygen. This causes the hemoglobin to form carboxyhemoglobin, which absorbs that red light as readily as oxyhemoglobin, which is formed when oxygen binds to hemoglobin. This means that the pulse oximeter will show the same number whether it is carboxyhemoglobin or oxyhemoglobin. This phenomenon is called the pulse oximetry gap and makes a pulse oximeter useless for diagnosing CO poisoning.

There is a linear decline in O2Hb (oxyhemoglobin) saturation as COHb (carboxyhemoglobin) saturation increases. This decline is not detected by pulse oximetry, which therefore overestimates O2Hb saturation in patients with increased COHb levels. The pulse oximetry gap increases with higher levels of COHb and approximates the COHb level. In patients with possible CO poisoning, pulse oximetry must be considered unreliable and interpreted with caution until the COHb level has been measured. [Bozeman WP, Myers RAM, Barish RA: Confirmation of the pulse oximetry gap in carbon monoxide poisoning. Ann Emerg Med November 1997;30:608-611.]

The fire department found no signs of CO in the apartment, but the couple claims that this was due to the oven having been unplugged 8 hours before.

This entire story is stupidity, and newspapers should be sued for publishing garbage like this with no corroboration other than some moron’s Google search. If you are going to make a claim like this, at least do a little research. Layers of editorial research my hairy ass.

Because I am getting used to providing evidence based resources:

Barker SJ, Tremper KK, The effect of carbon monoxide inhalation on pulse oximetry and transcutaneous PO2. Anesthesiology. 1987; 66: 677-679Gonzalez A

Buckley RG, Aks SE, Eshom JL, et al. The pulse oximetry gap in carbon monoxide intoxication. Ann Emerg Med. 1994; 24: 252-255

Gomez-Arnau J, Pensado A, Carboxyhemoglobin and pulse oximetry.Anesthesiology. 1990; 73: 57

Categories: Fake NewsMedical News


Aesop · February 22, 2024 at 10:29 am

Thanks for the CEN review on CO poisoning pitfalls!

This story is what happens when you drop hard science classes, and substitute fear-mongering globull warmist religion b.s. taught by blue-haired nose-ring freaks of nature, then turn the products of that mis-education loose in society.

    Vlad · February 23, 2024 at 2:38 am

    I’ve publicly disagreed with you before Aesop but not on this one
    These “people” have the IQ of a well worn shoe and no history of usefulness that the well worn shoe has.

it's just Boris · February 22, 2024 at 10:31 am

I disagree – I think it’s just fine that newspapers publish things like this woman’s claim. So long as they put them in a section labeled “Worth public mockery” or “Idiots at Large” or something to that effect. Seriously, it’s a public service to let everyone know who and where these people are, for purposes of avoidance if nothing else.

    Big Ruckus D · February 22, 2024 at 4:36 pm

    Should be published under the heading “cupid stunts” everyday of the year, and twice on valentine’s day.

BOTAN · February 22, 2024 at 12:19 pm

Was the light bulb being used incandescent (now outlawed) or LED?
A LED emits little to almost no energy.


I suspect using a LED bulb would have no warming capability. The 60 watt LED bulbs I use in my table lamps are at best room temperature.

Grumpy51 · February 22, 2024 at 1:18 pm

Remember – they breed and they vote.

And their vote is equal to yours…… hence, democracy being nothing more than mob rule…..

SoCoRuss · February 22, 2024 at 1:40 pm

And yet stupid people like this are allowed to breed and create more stupid people and future lawsuits I bet.
Wonder how many people had The Idiocracy movie and 1984 book as future prophesy vs fiction for $400, Alex.

Cederq · February 22, 2024 at 1:42 pm

A trifecta! I am in total agreement with you and Aesop! The fire department should charge cost to these brain dead grifters and the newspaper editor inked on his petard for allowing a superfluous, idiotic article to even shadow the reporters door. It is damnably frustrating to dumb down your instructions and explanations to basically retarded people because they can’t even grasp simple language and concepts. You just know they are not going to follow instruction because they found something on faecesbook that said different.

Rick T · February 22, 2024 at 3:03 pm

At least she didn’t try to claim carbon dioxide poisoning…

Joe · February 22, 2024 at 8:21 pm

What’s the over\under she has an Only Fans account besides TikTok?

Billo · February 22, 2024 at 10:46 pm

This was also an issue in the Chauvin/George Floyd trial. I was an expert involved in that case working for the defense. I have a long (13-part) description of our position, which was misreported. In part 12, I discuss the issues with CO measurement using oximetry. It’s towards the bottom of the first section on CO exposure in the open air.


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