Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsBiology · 1 decade ago

Can injecting air into your veins kill you?

or is it just a myth

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  • Manu
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    That depends. It is called Air embolism.

    Small amounts of air often get into the blood circulation accidentally during surgery and other medical procedures (for example a bubble entering an intravenous fluid line), but most of these air emboli enter the veins and are stopped at the lungs, and thus a venous air embolism that shows any symptoms is very rare.

    For Venous Air Embolisms, death may occur if a large bubble of gas (centimeters) becomes lodged in the heart, stopping blood from flowing from the right ventricle to the lungs (this is similar to vapor lock in engine fuel systems). However, experiments in animals show that the amount of gas necessary for this to happen is quite variable, and also depends on a number of other factors, such as body position. Very large and symptomatic amounts of venous air emboli may also occur in rapid decompression in severe diving or decompression accidents, where they may interfere with circulation in the lungs and result in a choking sensation or hypoxia.

    Gas embolism into an artery, termed arterial gas embolism, or AGE, is a more serious matter than in a vein, since a gas bubble in an artery may directly cause stoppage of blood flow to an area fed by the artery. The symptoms of AGE depend on the area of blood flow, and may be those of stroke or heart attack if the brain or heart, respectively, are affected. The amount of arterial gas embolism which causes symptoms depends on location, but in the brain may be a bubble with a volume only a fraction of a milliliter.

  • 1 decade ago

    I wonder if you take a needle, the nurse always squirt out the liquid to eject any air bubbles.

    This is sort of a myth, with some exceptions. I remember as a kid hearing that a single bubble of air would kill you. This is simply not the case. A small bubble in your vein is not harmful. A large bubble of air back to your heart, you create an air embolism. Air takes up space and in an enclosed area, like a blood vessel it can get lodged and can prevent blood getting past it. Even then it may not kill you, but it could cause an infarct (lack of blood/O2 supply causing cellular death

  • 4 years ago

    Depends on the size of the air bubble, your body will absorb air that comes into the vein, but if the bubble is too big it cannot be absorbed and if it reaches your heart you will die. There is a practice called 'Packing testosterone'. Body builders who inject testosterone will actually put a small air bubble in the syringe which helps pack the testosterone into the muscle for optimum performance. This however is a very small amount. A little air in the vein is fine. This is something that you should never try alone, heck I wouldn't try it period lol! There are some cases where at the hospital and they put in the IV there is bubbles that will get in the line, this is perfectly fine because your blood absorbs it quickly. A syringe full of air injected into your vein would most likely get pumped to your heart and cause a massive heart attack.

  • 1 decade ago

    c_schumacker's answer from a similar question...

    This is sort of a myth, with some exceptions. I remember as a kid hearing that a single bubble of air would kill you. This is simply not the case. A small bubble in your vein is not harmful. Now if you send a large bubble of air back to your heart, you create an air embolism. Air takes up space and in an enclosed area, like a blood vessel it can get lodged and can prevent blood getting past it. Even then it may not kill you, but it could cause an infarct (lack of blood/O2 supply causing cellular death)

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  • 1 decade ago

    It is NOT a myth

    It can really kill you.

  • 1 decade ago

    Most definitely. The nitrogen in the air can cause embolisms, which are frequently life-threatening. It is very painful.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    yes it makes an air bubble which goes to your heart,then it kills you.

  • 1 decade ago

    in seconds...will send an air bubble to your heart or lungs

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Yes, it can.

  • 1 decade ago

    it deffinitely can , your veins would explode .

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