Definition of Carboxyhemoglobin

Carboxyhemoglobin: Hemoglobin that has carbon monoxide instead of the normal oxygen bound to it. Carbon monoxide has a much stronger binding to hemoglobin than oxygen. Carboxyhemoglobin is formed in carbon monoxide poisoning and leads to oxygen deficiency in the body. The source of the carbon monoxide may be exhaust (such as from a car, truck, boat, or generator), smoke from a fire, or tobacco smoke. The level of carboxyhemoglobin is a measure of the degree of carbon monoxide exposure.


Last Editorial Review: 3/19/2012

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