Poison Gas People

Back in the mid-90’s there were accounts of several people on the West Coast being rushed to the emergency room. Once there, as the doctors were beginning treatment, the patients’ bodies began to emit a noxious gas that soon overcame the hospital staff, and IIRC, even caused the death of one or two of them.

Anybody know if they ever found out what was responsible for this?

I’ve heard about this - I seem to recall that the ‘official’ verdict was mass hysteria, but I can’t find anything on Snopes.

Cecil did a column on this. I don’t have the cite presently, but it was in one of his books, as well.

Here is the link to Cecil’s column on the subject.

http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a4_107.html

Google about under “toxic lady” to get more stuff besides Cecil’s article. In particular, an RN named Camilla Cracchiolo did a lot of investigation of this thing in alt.folklore.urban. Here’s an entry by her from the AFU archives, dated 1995:

http://www.urbanlegends.com/medical/toxic_lady_faq.html

Followup from Madeleine Page a year later, essentially reporting Cecil’s article:

http://www.urbanlegends.com/medical/toxic_lady_zotti.html

And some later followup, incorporating and supplementing Cracchiola’s material:

http://www.emergency-nurse.com/legends/toxic.htm