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Hospitalized in critical condition.
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Hospitalized in critical condition.

My uncle is in the hospital and can just barely breath.  He has lost a few of his toes due to diabetes and is on his 3rd heart attack.  His iron level is high and they will not give him oxygen because they say it could be fatal due to his iron levels.  This sounds crazy to me.  
Is there anyone out there that could explain why they can't give oxygen with high iron levels?
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690060_tn?1247845341
I would *guess* because that would result in production of lots of harmful free radicals called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS)
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390388_tn?1279639813
Sorry I'm ignorant on this.  Could you put that in layman's term's.  

Is it because of the heart, diabetes or iron?  I don't understand at all.  I just know he is gasping and not allowed oxygen (from what they say at the VA) is high iron levels..  It doesn't make since.  I feel we might loose him soon.  

I don't know if we will loose him or not I just want him comfortable.  I don't understand the iron and oxygen thing.  OK now I'm repeating myself.  Sorry.  Just really concerned.  Thanks.
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690060_tn?1247845341
well, I'm guessing that the high levels of iron in his blood would react with the high levels of oxygen that he'd get, and form harmful compounds. Those compounds can be especially harmful to heart muscle, if I recall correctly.

Even though iron has been put in bread etc for many years, too much iron is still bad. E.g., I only buy multivitamins with no iron in them.

The harmful compounds that would be formed are of a type called Reactive Oxygen Species.

As a parallel example, there is a famous anti-cancer drug called adriamycin that can harm the heart, because it also results in similar iron based ROS.
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390388_tn?1279639813
Thank you so much for explaining it to me.  I just feel so bad for him being so SOB.  I'm worried that his outlook is grim.  I was hoping maybe to get a reply that they were missing something or something could be done for him.  
I guess with that answer the only thing now is prayer and leaving it in Gods hands.   Who knows.  Maybe he will pull threw again. ;~)   He's always been pretty tough.  Thanks again;  Amy.
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367994_tn?1304957193
Hi Amy,

Sorry to hear of your uncle's health problems.

For some insight, the amount of iron within the cell is carefully regulated in order to provide an adequate level of the micro-nutrient while preventing its accumulation to toxic levels. Iron excess, either due to excess iron supplement use or accumulation in the body, is believed to generate oxidative stress, due to the high concentration of oxygen.

It is somewhat paradoxical to have breathing difficulties and oxygen is contraindicated: But the result of breathing elevated concentrations of oxygen is hyperoxia, is an excess of oxygen in body tissues, and symptoms include disorientation, breathing difficulty and vision changes.

Control is necessary to prevent oxidation damage to cell membranes, collapse of the alveoli in the lungs, myopia, retinal detachment, and seizures. Oxygen toxicity is treated by reducing the exposure to elevated oxygen levels. Studies show that the long term recovery from most types of oxygen toxicity is good. So good recovery is highly probable.  Take care.
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390388_tn?1279639813
Hi there.  I hope all has been well with you!  It's been a while since I have been on here.  I'm always happy to see your smiley face.    

Hearing that recovery is high sounds great to me!  I worry alot about him due to his poor heart and sugar issues.  I was actually pretty upset about him not being allowed oxygen.  So I hopped my bu*t on here to look for a reason of "why not"!  lol  You know me.  Thanks for the good news.  Nothing in our family is ever by text book.  Grrr. LOL

He still has a long way to go; but, I'll take anything good I can get at this point.  Still praying though...I know he has a long road ahead and hopefully no more heart attacks.

Take care my dear friend.   ;~)

Amy.
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