Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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As Ida cleanup begins, Our Lady of the Lake reports influx of recovery-related injuries

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BATON ROUGE - Across southeast Louisiana, the hum of portable generators elicits either relief or envy. As much of the area was plunged into darkness as Hurricane Ida hit Sunday, concern over carbon monoxide poisoning grew.

"In the last 24 hours, we've made 12 calls for either a CO detector going off or a person having what they would describe to be symptoms of CO poisoning," said Curt Monte of the Baton Rouge Fire Department.

As East Baton Rouge first responders answer those calls, all related to generators, those patients have ended up in the hospital. Tuesday afternoon, Our Lady of the Lake had already treated more than a dozen patients for carbon monoxide poisoning.

"Typically, when you do come in with carbon monoxide poisoning, you do need to be admitted because it didn't get recognized early enough," Dr. Mark Laperouse, medical director of emergency services at Our Lady of the Lake, said. "Those patients are going to stay in the hospital until we get those numbers down."

The hospital is also seeing people with other injuries related to storm response.

"Most things that we're seeing that are hurricane-related are preventable," Laperouse said. "One of the biggest ones is people getting on ladders, by themselves, to take a branch off or fix a roof."

The hospital is seeing chainsaw accidents and car wrecks, attributed to non-fuctioning traffic signals.

With hospital beds already at a premium, OLOL is also in desperate need of blood to treat more and more patients. Laperouse says blood types O- and O+ are in the highest demand, but anyone can donate. For more info, click here.


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