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Liquid nitrogen cocktail probe continues one year on
7:43am Thursday 10th October 2013 in News
EXPERTS are still investigating an incident one year ago in which a girl had to have her stomach removed after drinking a liquid nitrogen cocktail.
Gaby Scanlon, 18, suffered severe stomach pain last October after consuming the drink on a night out with friends at Oscars wine bar in Lancaster, whose owners also run bars in York.
Gaby was taken to Lancaster Royal Infirmary, where medics diagnosed a perforated stomach and were forced to perform emergency surgery to remove the organ.
Lancashire Constabulary launched an investigation in the immediate aftermath of the incident but Lancaster City Council’s envionmental health department subsequently took charge.
A spokesman for the authority said yesterday it was still investigating the “complex issue”, and he was unable to give any indication as to when the inquiries would be completed or what the outcome was likely to be.
The Press reported last year how the Lancaster bar was owned by Oscars Wine Bar Ltd Lancaster. Andrew and Sally Dunn, who were respectively director and secretary of the company, also owned Oscars wine bar and bistro and the Biltmore bar and grill in Swinegate, York.
Earlier last year, the Biltmore launched nitro cocktails, with liquid nitrogen – starting off at minus 193 degrees – being poured into glasses and reacting with oxygen to give a smoking cauldron effect. The Biltmore suspended sales of a liquid nitrogen cocktail after the Lancaster incident.
Liquid nitrogen, which is sometimes used in medicine, for example to remove unwanted skin, warts and pre-cancerous cells, has been increasingly used in cooking to make food, including ice cream.
In cocktails it is usually used to freeze ingredients, to chill glasses or as a visual gimmick, but if swallowed, it can cause cold burns to the mouth, throat and stomach, killing the tissue.
As the frozen vapour hits the stomach, it rapidly warms, releasing large volumes of air which can burst the stomach.