A Lancaster sixth-former had to have emergency surgery at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary after drinking two cocktails containing liquid nitrogen at Oscar's Wine Bar on George Street in Lancaster last Thursday evening.
Although her companions suffered no ill-effects from drinking the cocktail, the BBC reported that the teenager, Gaby Scanlon, 18, from Heysham, began to experience breathing difficulties and severe stomach pains. Taken to nearby Royal Lancaster Infirmary at 11pm she was found to have a perforated stomach and given life-saving emergency surgery to remove it. She is said to be in a stable, though serious condition.
Lancashire Police issued a statement saying "Medical opinion is that this would have proved fatal had the operation not been carried out urgently. The premises involved have fully co-operated with all agencies and have suspended drinks involving liquid nitrogen. The investigation is still in its early stages and we are still interviewing witnesses to establish the full facts." The force said they had been warning other bars in the town about what had happened.
Liquid nitrogen vaporises at -196°C and in drinks creates a smoky “dry ice” effect. You can see a video demonstrating the making of 'nitro' cocktails at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozkIL4KKFEo.
According to the cancer survivor's forum you can live (with care and good luck) to be 100 without your stomach, thanks to advanced surgical techniques and the human body being a wonderfully adaptive system. We wish young Gabby all the very best for a strong and speedy recovery.