Woman charged after allegedly huffing compressed air can in Kansas Wal-Mart

- A woman was found getting high at a Walmart in Kansas and is now facing charges.

The alleged incident occurred in Johnson County, Kansas, according to Fox 8 Cleveland.

Melissa Ann Wright stands accused of huffing an industrial strength duster chemical that is typically used to clean computers.

FOX 8 reports that Wright was seen huffing a can of Ultra Duster around 11 p.m. Wednesday. The person then called 911.

The spray’s intended use is for cleaning. The label on the bottle warns that if inhaled it can be harmful or even cause death.

“Once it enters the system it causes the heart to become super sensitive to things like adrenaline,” said Tama Sawyer, the managing director of the University of Kansas Poison Control Center to FOX 8. “So if you are frightened, you can have a heart attack.”

Police reportedly called an ambulance for Wright, but she refused to be treated.

“It can cause you to pass out fairly quickly because it removes the oxygen in your lungs,” Sawyer said.

A common injury caused by huffing is instant frostbite.

“They cause frostbite on contact. So you would have frostbite of the lips, throat, mouth and even further down,” Sawyer said.

Those dangers and the fact that the product can cause a liver or kidney to shut down encouraged the product’s manufacturers to add a bitter taste to deter abuse.

According to the University of Kansas Hospital, huffing calls are rare. Police agree and they also say that charging someone with abusing toxic vapors is a rarity as well, according to FOX 8.

Some experts say that compressed air is used to get high not because of an addiction to the chemical inside, but an addiction to the feeling it gives. It is said to be similar to a drunk-intoxicated feeling.

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