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Is Poison On the Menu?

Posted: September 17th, 2014 | Tags: , , | No Comments »

white_powder

Two stories appeared in the news recently, each describing accidental poisonings with chemical cleaners that occurred in restaurants. It’s important to note that cleaning chemicals such as the ones described in these stories can also be found in the home. These incidents can serve as examples of injuries that can happen when poison prevention practices are not followed.  Read more »


The Case of the Home Remedy

Posted: June 17th, 2014 | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

The IPC receives about 80,000 calls each year regarding poisonings; in 2013 over 50,000 of those were calling from their home about an exposure that occurred there.  Luckily, we were able to keep 90% of those people at home, without the need to go to an emergency room or doctor’s office for their exposure.  That is part of what we do here at the IPC—determine which 90% will do just fine with no treatment and which 10% need to be evaluated by a healthcare professional for possible treatment.

If you or your child has ingested a potentially harmful substance in your home, the first instinct often is to do something or give something in an attempt to counteract or reverse the potential poison.  This instinct is understandable and explains why there are so many home/folk remedies out there.  Unfortunately some of these can be much more dangerous than the substance originally ingested! Read more »


The Case of the Secret Ingredient

Posted: April 15th, 2014 | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Occasionally, the IPC gets a call regarding a family that was inadvertently ‘served’ a poison added to their food by a well-meaning home chef.  Most of our case studies relate back to IPC’s core poison prevention messages and this one is no different.  Today’s lesson is never store chemicals or cleaning products near food. Read more »


The Case of the Wrong Container

Posted: March 18th, 2014 | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

Today’s case study involves poisoning exposures that occurred because a potentially harmful substance was stored in the wrong container.  One of the IPC’s core poison prevention messages is always store chemicals, cleaning products, and medications in their original containers.  There are good reasons for this:

  1. The usage directions are always with the product
  2. The substance is in a child-resistant container when appropriate
  3. Everyone knows exactly what the substance is and what it is meant to be used for

Here are some real cases.  In sharing these, we hope it will prevent further cases of the wrong container. Read more »


Spring Fever and Poisonous Passion (aka Sexually Transmitted Poisons)

Posted: March 23rd, 2010 | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

By Carol and our special guest blogger Dr Frank Paloucek

Sex and death share a history together in the arts and in medicine probably as far back as both coexist.  Normally, when you put the words ‘harmful’ and ‘sex’ in the same sentence, it would be one about sexually transmitted diseases (er, or maybe S & M).  But, did you know that poisons can also be transmitted via intimate contact and exposure to bodily fluids?  Reminds me of one of my favorite ‘statshots’ from the Onion®, on how ‘best to poison your adversary’:  “poison self, then have unprotected sex with adversary”.  Frank, who was my mentor in pharmacy school (and the man largely responsible for me being such a tox geek) happens to be an expert on sexually transmitted poisons (hey, everyone’s got to have a hobby) and he has graciously provided us with some of the strangest, most fascinating, but 100% true stories on how someone can be poisoned. Read more »