Dutch teenager dies after inhaling deodorant spray in effort to get high

19-year-old placed towel over his head and sniffed spray during drug relapse

Adam Forrest@adamtomforrest
Saturday 17 November 2018 20:50
Doctors warn of dangers from deodorant inhalation
Doctors warn of dangers from deodorant inhalation

A 19-year-old Dutch man died after inhaling deodorant spray in an effort to get high, doctors in the Netherlands have revealed.

The victim, who has not been named, was staying in a rehab clinic at the time of the drug death, and had a history of cannabis and ketamine abuse.

The teenager placed a towel over his head and sniffed the spray during a drug relapse in July, according to a report in the BMJ detailing the fatality.

He was seen jumping up and down before going into cardiac arrest and collapsing. Doctors put the patient in a medically-induced coma after he was taken to hospital.

Dr Kelvin Harvey Kramp of Maasstad Hospital in Rotterdam said the 19-year-old “did not had enough brain function to sustain life” and died nine days later.

Although deaths from deodorant inhalation are “very rare,” the doctors behind the BMJ report warned about the dangers of all forms of inhalant and solvent abuse.

People in rehab centres are more likely to abuse chemical products found in the home, they said.

The possible health repercussions of inhaling such chemicals include brain damage, hearing loss and liver and kidney damage.

“To stop the abuse, we can only try to increase awareness about the possible dramatic consequences of inhalant abuse among youngsters, parents, medical personnel,” said Dr Kramp.

Stephen Ream, director of UK drugs charity Re-solv, told CNN that butane gas accounted for at least a third of the 64 inhalant and solvent abuse deaths that occurred in 2016.

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“Solvent abuse is also more of a problem in the northern regions of the UK, with rates particularly higher in Scotland and the northeast of England,” he said.

The doctors in the Netherlands said they were still unsure of the precise effects inhaling the deodorant spray had on the 19-year-old man in Rotterdam.

The hyperactivity experienced prior to his collapse could mean he was experiencing a “scary hallucination,” said Dr Kramp.

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