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Poisoning occurs when any substance interferes with normal body functions after it poiaons swallowed, inhaled, injected, or absorbed. The branch of medicine that deals with the detection and treatment of poisons is known as toxicology. Children are the most common victims of poisoning in the United States. Curiosity, inability to read warning labels, a desire to imitate adults, and inadequate supervision lead to most childhood poisonings.
The elderly are the second most likely group to be poisoned. Mental confusion, poor eyesight, and the use of multiple drugs are the encyclopediz reasons this group has a high rate of accidental poisoning.
A fncyclopedia number of poisonings also occur as suicide attempts or drug overdoses. Poisons are common in the home and workplace, yet there are basically two major types. One group consists of products that were never meant to be ingested or inhaled, such as shampoo, paint thinner, pesticides, houseplant leaves, and carbon monoxide. The other group contains products that can be ingested in small quantities, but which are harmful if taken in large amounts, such as pharmaceuticals, medicinal herbs, or alcohol.
Other types of poisons include the bacterial toxins that cause food poisoningsuch as Escherichia coli ; heavy og, such as the lead found in the paint on older houses; and the venom found in the bites and stings of some animals and insects. The staff at a poison control endyclopedia and emergency room doctors antixotes the most experience antidoes and treating poisoning cases.
Poisonings are a common occurrence. About 10 million cases of poisoning occur in the United States each year. In 80 percent of the cases, the victim is a child under the age of five. About 50 children die each year from poisonings. The effects of poisons are as varied as the poisons themselves; however, the exact mechanisms of only a few are understood.
Some poisons interfere with the metabolism. Others destroy the liver or kidneys, such as heavy metals and some pain relief medications, including acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ibuprofen. A poison may severely depress the central nervous systemleading to coma and eventual respiratory and circulatory failure.
Potential poisons in this category include anesthetics e. Some poisons directly affect the respiratory and circulatory system.
The Encyclopedia of Poisons and Antidotes – Carol Turkington, Deborah R. Mitchell – كتب Google
Carbon monoxide causes death by binding with hemoglobin that would normally transport oxygen throughout the body. Certain corrosive vapors trigger the body to flood the lungs with fluids, effectively drowning the person.
Cyanide interferes with respiration at the cellular level. Another group of poisons interferes with antiotes electrochemical impulses that travel between neurons in the nervous system. Yet another group, including cocaine, ergot, strychnine, and some snake venoms, causes potentially fatal seizures. Severity of symptoms can range from headache and nausea to convulsions and death.
The type of sncyclopedia, the amount and time of exposure, and the age, size, and health of ebcyclopedia victim are all factors which taken together determine the severity of symptoms and the chances for recovery. There are more than species of poisonous plants in the United States. Plants are second only to medicines in causing serious poisoning in children under age five.
There is no way to tell by looking at a plant if it is poisonous.
Some plants, such as the yew shrub, are almost entirely toxic: In other plants, only certain parts are poisonous. The bulb of the encyclppedia and daffodil are toxic, but the flowers are not; while the flowers of the jasmine plant are the poisonous part.
Moreover, some plants are confusing because portions of them are eaten as food while other parts are poisonous. For example, the fleshy stem tuber of the potato plant is nutritious; however, its roots, sprouts, and vines are poisonous. The leaves of tomatoes are poisonous, while the fruit is not.
Rhubarb stalks are encyclopddia to eat, but the leaves are poisonous.
Apricots, cherries, peaches, and apples all produce healthful fruit, but their seeds contain a form of cyanide that can kill a child if chewed in sufficient quantities. One hundred milligrams mg pousons moist, crushed apricot seeds can produce mg of cyanide. Symptoms of plant poisoning range from irritation of the skin or mucous membranes of the mouth and throat to nausea, vomitingconvulsions, irregular heartbeat, and even death.
It is often difficult to tell if a person has eaten a poisonous plant because there are pojsons tell-tale empty containers and no unusual lesions or odors poisonw the mouth. Many cases of plant poisoning involve plants that contain hallucinogens, such as peyote cactus buttons, certain types of mushrooms, and marijuana. Poisoning has occurred with Daturaor moonflower, a plant that has become popular with young people trying to imitate Native American puberty necyclopedia. Other cases of plant poisoning result from the use of herbal encyclopeddia supplements that have been contaminated by toxic substances.
The Food and Drug Administration FDA has the authority to monitor herbal products on the market and issue warnings about accidental poisoning or other adverse affects associated with these products. For example, in a manufacturer of nettle capsules found to contain lead recalled the product following a warning from the FDA.
Other dietary supplements have amtidotes found to contain small quantities of prescription medications or even toxic plants. Many products used daily in the home are poisonous if swallowed. These products often contain strong acids or strong bases alkalis. Toxic household cleaning products include the following:. Signs that a person has swallowed one of these substances include evidence of an empty container nearby, nausea or vomiting, and burns on the lips and skin around the mouth if the substance is a strong acid or alkali.
The chemicals in some of these products may leave a distinctive odor on the breath.
Both over-the-counter and prescription medicines can help the body heal if taken as directed. However, when taken in large quantities, or with other drugs with which there may be an adverse interaction, they can act as poisons.
Drug overdoses, both accidental and intentional, are the leading cause of poisoning in adults. Medicinal herbs should be treated like pharmaceuticals and taken only in designated quantities under the supervision of a knowledgeable person. Herbs that have healing qualities when taken in small doses can be toxic in larger doses or may interact with prescription medications in unpredictable ways.
Drug overdoses cause a range of symptoms, including excitability, sleepiness, confusion, unconsciousness, rapid heartbeat, convulsions, nausea, and changes in blood pressure.
The best initial evidence of a drug over-dose is the presence of an empty container near the victim. People can be poisoned by fumes they inhale. Carbon monoxide is the most common form of inhaled poison. Other toxic substances that can be inhaled include:. A doctor or poison control center should be called if any form of poisoning is suspected or if children or other persons behave in an odd manner. Initially, poisoning is suspected if the victim shows changes in behavior and signs or symptoms previously described.
Hallucinations or other psychiatric symptoms may indicate poisoning by a hallucinogenic plant. Evidence of an empty container or information from the victim is helpful in determining exactly what substance has caused the poisoning. Some acids and alkalis leave burns on the mouth. Petroleum products, such as lighter fluid or kerosene, leave a distinctive odor on the breath.
The vomit may be tested to determine the exact composition of the poison. Once hospitalized, the person may be given blood and urine tests to determine his or her metabolic condition. Treatment for poisoning depends on the poison swallowed or inhaled. Contacting the poison control center or hospital emergency room is the first step in getting proper treatment.
The poison control center’s telephone number is often listed with emergency numbers on the inside cover of the telephone book, or it can be reached by dialing the operator. The poison control center will ask for specific information about the victim and the poison then give appropriate first aid instructions. If the person is to be taken to a hospital, a sample of vomit and the poison container should be taken along, if they are available.
For acid, alkali, or petroleum product poisonings, the person should not vomit.
[PDF Download] The Encyclopedia of Poisons and Antidotes (Facts on File Library of Health and
Acids and alkalis can burn the esophagus if they are vomited, and petroleum products can be inhaled into the lungs during vomiting, resulting in pneumonia. Once the victim is under medical care, doctors have the option of treating the person with a specific remedy to counteract the poison antidote or with activated charcoal to absorb the substance inside the individual’s digestive system.
In some instances, pumping the stomach may be required. This technique, which is known as gastric lavage, involves introducing 20 to 30 mL of tap water or 9 percent saline solution into the person’s digestive tract and removing the stomach contents with a siphon or syringe. The process is repeated until the washings are free of poison.
Medical personnel will encyclopedis provide supportive care as needed, such as intravenous fluids or mechanical ventilation. If the doctor suspects that the poisoning was not accidental, he or she is required to notify law enforcement authorities. Most cases of malicious poisoning concern family members or acquaintances of the victim, but the number of intentional random poisonings of the general public antidotds increased in the late s and early s.
A case reported in involved the use of nicotine to poison 1, pounds of ground beef in a Michigan supermarket. Over persons fell ill after eating the poisoned beef. The outcome of poisoning varies from complete recovery encyclopediia death and depends on the type and amount of the poison, the health of the victim, and the speed with which medical care is obtained.
Most accidental poisonings are preventable.
The number of deaths of children from poisoning has declined from about per year in the s to about 50 each year in the s. This decline has occurred mainly because annd better packaging of toxic materials and better public education.
Parents should monitor the activities and substances to which their children are exposed. The number of the nearest Poison Control Center should be posted next to every telephone in the house. The number can be found on the first page of any telephone book. Antidote — A remedy to counteract a poison or injury.
Also necyclopedia to a substance which encyclopfdia the effect of homeopathic remedies. Emetic — A medication intended to cause vomiting.
Emetics are sometimes used in aversion therapy in place of electric shock.