Coronavirus: Two men in US drink disinfectants in bid to prevent Covid-19

Cases come after Trump questions whether household products known to kill disease could work inside body

Chiara Giordano
Wednesday 29 April 2020 19:24 BST
Trump suggests injecting disinfectant could treat coronavirus

Two men were hospitalised after drinking disinfectant in an effort to prevent Covid-19.

The patients, in Georgia, both of whom have a history of psychiatric problems, are expected to make a full recovery.

Gaylord Lopez, director of Georgia Poison Centre, said a man in his 50s, from southwest of Atlanta, was hospitalised after claiming to have drunk 16 ounces of bleach on Saturday.

He was later moved to a psychiatric ward before being discharged, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) reports.

Mr Lopez told the newspaper: “I don’t know very many patients who will take 16 ounces, but then again, it is a psych history patient.”

The following day, a man in his 30s, also from Atlanta, reportedly consumed a combination of cleaning product Pine-Sol, mouthwash, beer and painkillers. He has also since been discharged.

It is not clear whether there is any link between the men ingesting the disinfectants and comments made by Donald Trump during a press briefing last week.

The US president had pondered out loud about whether household products known to kill the coronavirus could work inside the human body.

“I see that disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute, one minute” he said. “And is there a way we can do something like that? By injection inside, or almost a cleaning?”

Mr Trump later said he had asked the questions sarcastically after he was criticised by experts.

Two other Georgians also fell ill after consuming household cleaning products before Mr Trump’s comments, according to the AJC.

Mr Lopez said he felt the public had misinterpreted the president’s remarks about injecting disinfectants when he had just been asking questions about the possibility of this as a treatment.

Georgia Poison Centre, the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and a number of cleaning product manufacturers have issued guidance warning people not to consume disinfectants.

Advice from Georgia Poison Centre – one of 55 such facilities across America – also warns against the dangers of mixing cleaning products.

The centre has seen a sharp rise in the number of people falling ill after mixing a combination of products together to clean surfaces and inhaling the fumes in the last two months.

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