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AnnlynnRN, Nurse (RN)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 583
Experience:  RN - 22 years in ICU & Critical Care (Cardiac, Neurology, Trauma, & Medical/Surgical ICU.)
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I am constantly smelling a carbon monoxide smell and it

Resolved Question:

I am constantly smelling a carbon monoxide smell and it makes me very nauseas and dizzy. I have had the house inspected by the fire department and nothing showed up and no one else seems to smell what I am smelling. I am starting to feel fvery sick. what is it?
Submitted: 10 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  AnnlynnRN replied 10 years ago.


It was a very good move on your part by calling in the fire department to check for carbon monoxide in your home. (You can also purchase a carbon monoxide detector for your home.) You can find carbon monoxide detectors for your home in a store like Wal Mart or some type of home improvement store.

Because you mentioned that the fire department have cleared the possibility of any harmful gases coming from your home and no one else is smelling it, perhaps you have an allergy or sinus infection that is being triggered by something in your home.

There is a condition called Phantosmia. This is a condition where people smell odors that are not really present. It can be caused by a few things. Damage to the olfactory (the "smelling" center of your brain) nerves in the brain can cause this. The damage is usually caused by some type of injury or viral infection, or sometimes an exposure to some type of toxin.

I suggest you see your primary physician to rule out some type of sinus infection, and if it's ruled out as the cause, perhaps he/she can refer you to an allergist. If allergies are ruled out, then possibly neurologist could be of help.

For your own peace of mind, this problem is usually caused by a sinus infection or allergy to something (perhaps to something in your home) that causes you to smell this odor, in that case is easily treatable with antibiotics or allergy medications.

Customer: replied 10 years ago.
Reply to AnnlynnRN's Post: I have already had a sinus infection r/o, it comes at any time of the year and I live in a different home now and still have the problem. Do you think I should just request a referral to a neurologist and mention what you said?
Expert:  AnnlynnRN replied 10 years ago.


Being that you've already been ruled out for sinus, I suggest going right for a neurologist. After my initial answer to your question, I did some research, and learned of some treatment options. An otolaryngologist or EENT (eye, ear, nose, throat) may be brought in with your neurologist as a consult.

Normally I do not like to refer people to websites, however in my research I've found a site that offers a lot of good information on phantosmia and olfactory disorders. I will leave you with this site that discusses the etiology, diagnosis, and treatment for phantosmia and other olfactory disorders.

You will notice in the beginning abstract of this site, it discusses a trans-nasal (through the nose) surgery that can be done with an endoscope which is much less invasive than traditional surgery.

Aside from the above site, still feel free to let me know if you need any other information or help in interpreting the terminology of the above site.

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