Author(s): Boyle JS, Bechtel LK, Holstege CP
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Clinicians are often challenged to manage critically ill poison patients. The clinical effects encountered in poisoned patients are dependent on numerous variables, such as the dose, the length of exposure time, and the pre-existing health of the patient. The goal of this article is to introduce the basic concepts for evaluation of poisoned patients and review the appropriate management of such patients based on the currently available literature. METHODS: An unsystematic review of the medical literature was performed and articles pertaining to human poisoning were obtained. The literature selected was based on the preference and clinical expertise of authors. DISCUSSION: If a poisoning is recognized early and appropriate testing and supportive care is initiated rapidly, the majority of patient outcomes will be good. Judicious use of antidotes should be practiced and clinicians should clearly understand the indications and contraindications of antidotes prior to administration.
This article was published in Scand J Trauma Resusc Emerg Med
and referenced in Emergency Medicine: Open Access