Author(s): Lam SM, Lau AC, Yan WW
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Abstract In order to obtain up-to-date information on the pattern of severe acute poisoning and the characteristics and outcomes of these patients, 265 consecutive patients admitted to an intensive care unit in Hong Kong for acute poisoning from January 2000 to May 2008 were studied retrospectively. Benzodiazepine (25.3\%), alcohol (23\%), tricyclic antidepressant (17.4\%), and carbon monoxide (15.1\%) were the four commonest poisons encountered. Impaired consciousness was common and intubation was required in 67.9\% of admissions, with a median duration of mechanical ventilation of less than 1 day. The overall mortality was 3.0\%. Among the 257 survivors, the median lengths of stay in the intensive care unit and acute hospital (excluding days spent in psychiatric ward and convalescent hospital) were less than 1 day and 3 days, respectively. Factors associated with a longer length of stay included age of 65 or older, presence of comorbidity, Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II score of 25 or greater, and development of shock, rhabdomyolysis, and aspiration pneumonia, while alcohol intoxication was associated with a shorter stay. This is the largest study of its kind in the Chinese population and provided information on the pattern of severe acute poisoning requiring intensive care admission and the outcomes of the patients concerned.
This article was published in Hum Exp Toxicol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Toxicology