Toxicological Quackery Part 2
Some MORE Medical Treatments to Avoid like the Plague! We hope you enjoyed our Toxicological Quackery Part 1 blog posted earlier this month. In Part 2 we will continue by giving more procedures that you should definitely avoid due to potential for serious injury. 1. LAETRILE (Vitamin B-17 or amygdalin) Amygdalin is a chemical derived … more
West Nile 2012: Reduce, Repel, Report
Just in time for the summer months and kids on summer vacation, there was a recent Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) memo that alerted healthcare providers and public health officials that West Nile Virus (WNV) activity in mosquitoes and birds is increasing throughout the state. The current high summer temperatures and low rainfall in … more
Toxicological Quackery Part 1
Some Medical Treatments to Avoid like the Plague It’s probably no surprise that there are ineffective, unproven, and potentially dangerous alternative medical procedures available for nearly every area of medicine. Medical toxicology is no exception. There are more than a few medical practices which are non-FDA approved and have been associated with serious injury and … more
Lessons From the Mercury Disaster at Minamata Bay, Japan
Have you ever wondered why environmentalists are so concerned about the way we dispose of even trace amounts of mercury, such as that contained in your fever thermometers, thermostats, and compact fluorescence lightbulbs (CFLs)? The answer comes from a hard lesson we learned over a half century ago involving an environmental disaster at a … more
To Flush or Not to Flush: How to Properly Dispose of Your Medications
Is your medicine cabinet starting to look like a pharmacy? Do you really need that bottle of ibuprofen that expired in the 1990s? It’s probably time you cleaned out your medicine cabinet. Stockpiling old or unused medications can lead to medication errors, unintentional ingestion by kids or pets and for some prescription drugs—abuse. So what … more
Don’t Make Me Puke!!
Why you should never ever induce vomiting The first 5 years I worked at the IPC, I was a CSPI and answered calls from the general public and health care professionals. I would always joke with my fellow CSPIs that we used the word ‘vomit’ more times in a day than most people probably do … more
Meet the IPC Experts! – Part 3
It’s National Poison Prevention Week!! This week we continue our “Meet the IPC Experts” series with the third installment of our four part series. Our staff of experts answered over 86,000 calls from the general public and healthcare professionals in Illinois last year. In their own words, learn more about their professional background, favorite parts … more
Meet the IPC Experts – Part 2!
Happy Illinois Poison Prevention Month This week we continue our “Meet the IPC Experts” series with the second installment of our four part series. Our staff of experts answered over 86,000 calls from the general public and healthcare professionals in Illinois last year. In their own words, learn more about their professional background, favorite parts … more
What’s That “Chirping” Sound??
The “chirping” you hear this spring may not be the birds outside your window One day you’re awakened by the sound of your smoke alarm with no signs of smoke or gas leaks, what do you do? This “chirping” or “beeping” sound could possibly be a sign that your detector has a low battery. … more
Sex, drugs and the Illinois Poison Center
It is my turn to write the blog and for the past few days, colleagues have been after me to write something kind of sexy, but with a poisoning angle. The problem is that now that I have qualified to join AARP, I am unsure that I can replicate a summary of sexually transmitted toxins … more
Seniors Are at Risk for Poisoning, Too!
The following post was contributed by the American Association of Poison Control Centers. If you are a senior adult, you may think that poison centers and poison prevention are mainly for kids. But seniors are at risk for poisoning, too! As we age, we often take more and more medicine, whether prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin or … more
Poinsettia Plants – Poisonous or Not? Let’s Put it to Rest
Small Stocking Stuffers Can Spell BIG Trouble
With all the fun and excitement of gift shopping and exchanging this holiday season, it is easy to buy the coolest toys and games, but some of them may be dangerous in small hands. We want to point out two items that if swallowed by a child (or anyone for that matter) could lead to … more
New Illinois Law Expands Allergy Treatment Options in Schools
How you would like your child’s school year to start out something like this: It is a typical day during lunchtime at the local elementary school cafeteria. A kindergartner with a severe peanut allergy trades lunch with a friend. Little does he know, the shared cookie contains peanut butter. The child develops a red rash, … more
Tricky Treats to Avoid This Halloween
A common Halloween concern, aside from the occasional ghoul and goblin, is the possibility of a child or family member being exposed to tainted candy. However, we recently came across some products and practices in the news that could present new concerns this Halloween. Here are a few that really stuck out: marijuana shaped candy, … more
“My Child Ate… Nature!”
Bleeeaaauuugghh!! Nasty!!! Eeeeeewwww!! How many times have you squealed aloud after discovering your child has recently delved into what they believe to be a culinary delight but you know to be just plain gross? While getting outside to allow your brood some time to release excess energy is the primary goal, it may lead to … more
“My Child Ate…Something Around the House!”
The blog series “My Child Ate…” continues this week with us taking a look at the top ten things children are getting into around the house. Each year, poison centers receive over one million calls involving children ages five and under. Have you ever wondered what in the world kids are getting into? Well check … more