A teenage girl had her stomach removed to save her life after drinking a cocktail containing liquid nitrogen.
Gabby Scanlon was said to be out in Lancaster celebrating her 18th birthday when she was taken ill after drinking the cocktail which contains liquid nitrogen to give it a smoking appearance.
Lancashire Police and the city centre bar where Gabby bought the drink have confirmed they have launched an investigation.
Gabby, who is from Heysham, near Morecambe, reported feeling breathless after drinking the cocktail during a night out with friends.
She was taken to Lancaster Royal Infirmary at around 11pm where she underwent emergency surgery to remove her stomach, which had become perforated.
A Lancashire Police spokesman confirmed she was in a “serious but stable condition” and said doctors had said the cocktail would have proved fatal had the operation not been carried out so quickly.
She added: “The investigation is still in its early stages and we are still interviewing witnesses to establish the full facts.
“The premises involved have fully cooperated with all agencies and have suspended drinks involving liquid nitrogen.”
Liquid nitrogen, which evaporates at minus 196C, has become increasingly common as a method for instantly freezing food and drinks or creating an impressive cloud of vapour.
But it should only ever be used as a method to chill glasses or freeze ingredients as it can cause internal damage when inhaled or ingested.
If swallowed, the liquid can freeze parts of the mouth, throat or stomach, causing severe cold burns which destroy the tissue.
The liquid can also rapidly boil inside the stomach, creating a huge amount of vapour which could potentially cause damage such as perforations.