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Poinsettia Plants – Poisonous or Not? Let’s Put it to Rest

Posted: December 6th, 2011 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Nothing says the holidays quite like bright lights, trees and other decorations; and no holiday decor would seem complete without those pretty poinsettias. Although poinsettias are a fixture around many homes this time of year, calls to the IPC increase from concerned parents, Read more »


Poisoning is a Matter of Dose

Posted: January 12th, 2010 | Tags: , , , | 6 Comments »

In 2006, I nearly killed my kidneys because I ignored the rule “poisoning in only a matter of dose”.  With regards to poisoning, the potentially harmful dose of a medication can be acute meaning too much all at once, or chronic referring too much over an extended period of time.  Paracelsus, a 16th century physician who is often referred to as the father of toxicology wrote, “All things are poison and nothing is without poison, only the dose permits something not to be poisonous”.  I could have avoided a 3 day hospital stay if I had taken what I learned in fellowship to heart. Read more »


Top 5 Things You Didn’t Think Could be Poisonous to Children

Posted: January 5th, 2010 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments »

Half of the calls received by the IPC involve kids under the age of 6.  Young children are naturally curious and explore their environments by touching and putting things into their mouths.  They learn by imitation, their taste buds are immature and they do not understand cause and effect.  Plus they are just small, so in many cases it doesn’t take much to overwhelm their little systems.  The IPC recommends keeping all potentially harmful substances away from children, because just about anything can be a poison in the right amount.  The following 5 things are in many households and it may surprise you that they can be so harmful. Read more »


Welcome to the Illinois Poison Center Blog

Posted: December 9th, 2009 | Tags: , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

An Introduction to the Illinois Poison Center Blog:

Welcome to the first post of the Illinois Poison Center blog site!  I must be honest, in medical school I never thought I would be writing an internet blog, probably because Al Gore hadn’t invented the internet yet and blogs did not exist.  A lot has changed in the past 20 plus years.  With the tremendous growth in the internet and social media, the ability to communicate in the blogosphere has taken off with mommy blogs, daddy blogs, political blogs, community blogs, health-related blogs and others.  There are those who may ask “Does the world really need another blog, especially a poison center blog?”  I would have to answer with an unequivocal “yes”.

The Illinois Poison Center provides a variety of services and programs that encompass health care, public health education and research.  Through this blog, we will generate a dialogue, a conversation, with everyone interested in decreasing the harm of poisoning in their family, community or in the patients they treat.

We will have stories, articles, news you can use, interesting poisoning cases, and information and education on how to make your home and community safer. Read more »