By Emilyn Gil Health and wellness is an extensive subject. With frequent discoveries, new research, and updated technology we are constantly learning more and more about treatments, medical practices, and how the human body works. Over the years we’ve come incredibly far and accomplished things never before thought possible.

Yet, even with all the advancements of recent years, there are still rare cases that stump even the most experienced doctors.

Kathi Wilson’s case ended up puzzling doctors for a shocking 10 years.

Kathi’s Mysterious Illness

Kathi was 41 years old when she first began getting sick. She suffered flu-like symptoms, fatigue, and achy muscles and as her condition declined even walking became a difficulty. She began to sleep through most days just to escape the pain.

Her doctors took tests, X-rays, MRIs, and other thorough examinations and yet were unable to find a diagnosis for Kathi. It wasn’t until Kathi decided to remodel her bathroom that the answer to her ailments was finally discovered.

Kathi hired 2 contractors to change her bathroom tile, redo the vanity and shower, and replace her old water heater. It was these two heroes that discovered the secret to her sickness; her water heater had a very small gas leak.

Woman’s Mysterious Illness Turns Out to Be Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Kathi Wilson, 41, battled a mysterious illness that left her walking like an old lady. Even her doctor couldn’t figure out what was making her so sick. Her daughter Ashlie said the family was baffled. Kathi tried many medications, while specialists ran all sorts of tests.

Over the course of 10 years, Kathi was being poisoned by the carbon monoxide leaking from her water heater. The heater had been installed improperly and this tiny leak had left Kathi with the countless symptoms of her declining health.

With the gas leak repaired, Kathi thanked her contractors profusely and found new and improved health and optimism for the future.

The Dangers Of Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is a poisonous gas with no color, odor, or taste. It is produced when a gas appliance doesn’t completely burn the natural gas or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) while in use. This can also occur with blocked chimneys or vents.

Carbon monoxide poisoning occurs when you breathe in the gas and it replaces the oxygen in your blood. As in Kathi’s case, even small amounts of carbon monoxide can cause poisoning and horrifying symptoms. In larger amounts carbon monoxide can be deadly.

Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Some common symptoms to look out for if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning are:

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Breathlessness
  • Collapse
  • Loss of consciousness

These symptoms are similar to those of the flu, food poisoning, fatigue, and viral infections, which is why carbon monoxide poisoning, as in Kathi’s case, can be confused with something else. 

What To Do If You Suspect Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

If you do suspect that you may be affected by carbon monoxide poisoning, follow these steps:

  • Open doors and windows
  • Turn off gas appliances
  • Leave the house to get fresh air
  • See your doctor and inform them that you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Locate a Gas Safe registered engineer to inspect your gas appliances

How To Prevent Carbon Monoxide Leaks

The best way to prevent gas leaks is to have your gas appliances checked every year by a certified engineer. It is also highly recommended to purchase and install an audible carbon monoxide alarm in every room that has a gas appliance. Be sure the alarm is installed according to the instructions and that the batteries are replaced frequently.

Get Your Daily Dose Of Oxygen

Just because you can’t see it or the doctors can’t find it, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist! The air you breathe is just as important as what you eat and how much you exercise. Make sure to take all the necessary precautions to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, and keep your health in good shape.