MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Murfreesboro man has been in and out of the emergency room for repeatedly inhaling computer dust cleaner, and doctors have a possibly life-saving warning about the common household product.
The man was found unconscious in a hotel room Tuesday with 11 empty cans of Ultra Duster, one still in his hand with the tip in his mouth.
There’s a warning on the cans that states inhaling the contents might be harmful or fatal. Intended to blast dust away from computers, some use it for the wrong reasons.
“My desire is that people would understand that this is a dangerous practice, and that only air should go in and out of your lungs,” said Dr. Brady Allen at St. Thomas Rutherford Hospital.
“I think the more common dangerous effects are an intoxicating effect or similar to alcohol or marijuana that can impair people,” Allen continued.
Emergency room physicians have seen quite a few cases similar to the Murfreesboro man’s: people trying to get a quick, cheap high.
Doctors say often times huffing, sniffing or inhaling aerosols directly can be too much for the heart to handle.
ER physicians have seen quite a few cases similar to this one; people trying to get a quick, cheap high. Doctors say often times huffing, sniffing or inhaling aerosols directly can be too much for the heart to handle.
“The biggest thing that we see is that there are small proportion of people who suffer sudden cardiac death,” Dr. Allen explained. “Long term consequences can involve neurological problems difficult learning, problems with your memory; things that can last a life-time.”
Murfreesboro police say they are surprised this man survived.
“It wasn’t just one can. We found actually 11 cans that had been used in the motel room, and found a receipt where a total of 14 cans had been purchased at the near-by Walmart,” said Sgt. Kyle Evans with the Murfreesboro Police Department.
Police are cracking down and have taken out a warrant against the 30-year-old man, who will be charged with inhaling an aerosol for unlawful purposes.
“People misusing products to get high is such a dangerous and scenario that we would discourage anyone from participating in,” Sgt. Evans added.
Once the man is arrested, authorities hope he can get the help he needs to kick his potentially deadly habit.
Both police and doctors say if you suspect someone is inhaling these products, try to get them help because they can be just as addictive as alcohol or drugs.