Poisoning is the second leading cause of injury related death in the U.S. In Illinois alone, the IPC fields over 74,000 calls on poisoning exposures each year—nationwide, poison centers manage over 2.3 million exposures. Those stats may surprise you but did you also know that more than 90% of all poisonings happen in the home? Many of these poisons are things we all use or come in contact with regularly. Here are the top 5 most toxic substances that are in your house right now: Read more »
Along with sunny days and warmer temperatures, spring also brings something most of us are not excited about … allergies. Allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the United States, and are a major financial burden with an estimated $18 billion spent annually on prevention and treatment.1 And like any enemy, allergies change tactics. In the case of allergy triggers, they change with the seasons. Springtime allergens predominantly include tree pollens, followed by grass and weed pollens in the summer, and molds in the fall.
In January of this year, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) released an updated report on energy drinks based on Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) data. According to the report, energy drink related visits to the ER has increased dramatically as the sales of the products increased. Energy drinks are flavored, sweet drinks that contain added amounts of caffeine and other additives such as guarana (a source of additional caffeine), taurine and ginseng. They are marketed as providing benefits such as increased stamina, and enhanced physical and mental alertness and performance.
On Saturday, April 27, 2013, the Drug Enforcement Administration will be sponsoring a National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day for the sixth time in the past 30 months. Americans will have an opportunity to empty their medicine cabinets, bedside tables, and kitchen drawers of unwanted, unused, and expired prescription drugs and take them to collection sites manned by local police officers and sheriff’s deputies located throughout the United States.
Unfortunately, as the President of the To the Maximus Foundation (TTM), I know the side effects of synthetic drugs all too well. The foundation was founded after the death of my son, Max Dobner, during his first time use of synthetic marijuana (Spice). TTM educates and informs about synthetic drugs and advocates for effective legislation.
As a former Peace Corps Volunteer (2002-2004, Republic of Kiribati/K-29) and a mom, I’m a strong believer and supporter of “it takes a village” especially when it comes to creating safer home, play and work environments. Read more »
As a father of three young children, I’ve seen my children get into most everything around the house. Young children’s curiosity can often put them at risk for exposure to a potentially harmful substance. In fact, close to 49 percent of all calls to the Illinois Poison Center (IPC) are regarding children 5 years of age and under. Read more »
A comatose 53 year female is found on the floor surrounded by 6 empty pill bottles. She is brought to a local emergency department for treatment. The physician examines the patient and then reaches for the phone . . .
A police officer pulls over a car that has been weaving on the roadway. In the car, there is a baggie of unmarked pills and the officer wonders if they are the cause of the erratic driving. He pulls out his cell phone . . .
A paramedic in a rural area picks up someone who just drank windshield wiper fluid. He wonders what sort of symptoms might develop in the 30 minute transport to the hospital. He picks up the phone and calls . . .
Illinois State Law Enforcement would like regular reports on the epidemic of synthetic drugs in Illinois. They reach for the phone and dial . . .
These are just a few of the reasons people and organizations call the Illinois Poison Center. The IPC is a first responder that provides critical, needed information at the point of care, whether it is a frantic care-giver or an experienced emergency department physician looking for help with a complex, critically ill poisoned patient.
As the Representative for Illinois’ 78th House District, I am proud to sponsor House Bill 1403 which protects the state’s investment in the Illinois Poison Center (IPC). The IPC provides critical services for Illinois’s citizens, providing poison prevention education and expert medical advice to both health care providers and the public, as well as acting as a first responder during public health emergencies. I have also seen, first-hand, the impact the IPC has on our state’s health care safety net through my work at Loretto Hospital on Chicago’s west side. Read more »
Young children are most vulnerable to the health effects of lead, a toxic metal that has been used in a variety of household and commercial products. Despite continued declines in the numbers of children affected, lead poisoning remains one of the most common preventable pediatric injuries.
Read more »
Last week State Representative Camille Lilly and State Senator Andy Manar introduced legislation maintains the state’s current investment in the Illinois Poison Center (IPC). Our goal is to secure 15 additional co-sponsors by the end of next week and we need your help! By adding additional co-sponsors we can demonstrate to the Illinois General Assembly (ILGA) just how important the state’s only remaining poison control center is to you and the State of Illinois. Click here to let your voice be heard!
Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, and so it is that time of year that we are extra nice to our sweeties, and we go out of our way to show just how much we love them. Not all couples remain smitten with each other though, and unfortunately Love and Poison can go together just like flowers and candy or strawberries and champagne.
Recent history (and crime statistics) is full of not-so romantic stories about one half of a couple underhandedly getting rid of their other half by poisoning them. If you are a fan of romantic comedies, these stories may depress you, but if Investigation Discovery is more your viewing pleasure, you will love these tales of toxic love: Read more »
For children ages 18-36 months, poisoning is the #1 cause of injury-related hospitalization and death
In Illinois, there are more people hospitalized for poisonings than for injuries from firearms and motor vehicle collisions combined
9 out of 10 poisoning deaths are caused by drugs/medications
As the nation’s oldest poison center prepares to kick off its annual Illinois Poison Prevention Month (IPPM) in the month of March – we asked some of our most active volunteer educators to share their IPPM activities; but more importantly we asked them to explain why IPPM and the Illinois Poison Center (IPC) are so important: Read more »
Lives are on the line, both directly and indirectly, when it comes to drug abuse in the military. Sadly, the harmful effects of bath salts are not entirely acute, but may result in chronic depression, delusions, and paranoia. As history tends to repeat itself we must be vigilant to address this current concern in addition to taking preemptive steps to combat the looming issues on the horizon. Read more »
On January 1, a new law regarding radon testing went into effect. The new legislation amends the Child Care Act of 1969 to require radon testing of licensed daycare centers, daycare homes, and group day care homes. Last year, the Illinois Poison Center (IPC) posted a blog about radon in response to a law requiring radon testing in rental spaces. There is an existing law in Illinois requiring radon testing in schools and residential buildings. Read more »
As an experienced babysitter/nanny and parent of a toddler, we’ve seen young children eat or get into everything from crayons to lotions to poop! The first reaction is usually…OMG; then “what should I do?”; then sheer panic. Sound familiar? Read more »
The year was 1953. Dwight Eisenhower was president, the average cost of a new house was $12,650 and gas was $.29 a gallon. This was also the year Illinois Poison Center (IPC) was established. If you’re not sure what the IPC does, check out “A Day in the Life of a Poison Center” blog for some funny, interesting, and sometimes sad calls received by the poison center experts. Read more »
Welcome to the Illinois Poison Center Holiday Survival Guide! Whether it’s a spoiled treat or too many party poisons, joyous holiday celebrations have the potential hazardous situations. Read more »
Welcome to the Illinois Poison Center Holiday Survival Guide! Whether it’s a spoiled treat or too many party poisons, joyous holiday celebrations have the potential to become hazardous situations. Read more »
Since 1966 “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” has been a holiday favorite for young and old alike. In this 26 minute cartoon, the despicable and ruthless Mr. Grinch goes through extreme measures to dampen the Christmas spirit. To adequately describe the low down character traits of the green grouch, the song “You’re A Mean One Mr. Grinch” was incorporated into the script. Read more »
The Illinois Poison Center would like to share this festive poem from Dr. John A. Trestail III, R.Ph, ABAT, from the Center of the Study of Criminal Poisoning. Look below to find links for our resources on the potential holiday hazards mentioned in the poem!
‘TIS THE SEASON TO BE POISONED
‘Twas the morning post-party, when all through the house,
No adult was stirring, not even your spouse. Read more »
Is a set of high-powered magnet toys on your shopping list this holiday season? If so, be careful about leaving them under the Christmas tree or anywhere a child can reach them. The attraction to magnets is understandable since the force field produced by these objects appears to be a magical trick. But these high-powered magnets can be very dangerous to the gastrointestinal (GI) tract if swallowed.
As the autumn leaves dwindle to the coming winter frost, our cities and homes become alive with holiday décor such as wreaths, Christmas trees, mistletoe, poinsettia, and American holly. Last year, we addressed the toxicity hazards of the poinsettia plant. This year our focus will be on the American Holly.
September may have been National Preparedness Month, but here at the Illinois Poison Center (IPC) we work year round to encourage Illinoisans to be prepared for all types of emergencies that may occur in their area. For folks that live within a 10-mile radius of one of the state’s six nuclear power plants, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) recommends including potassium iodide (KI) tablets in their emergency preparedness kit along with their other supplies. Read more »
There is a definite chill coming to Illinois. On my nightly walk with the dogs, hats and gloves are now a necessity. Soon boots and thick coats will come out of hiding to add needed warmth when venturing outside.
Furnaces are beginning to kick on more frequently now. Every year, like clockwork, this is the time that calls to poison centers regarding carbon monoxide start to rise. Calls to the Illinois Poison Center in the October – December time period are usually about 50% higher than the June – September months. Read more »