Sixty years ago, on February 7, 1962, President John F. Kennedy signed Proclamation 3449 declaring the observation of the very first National Poison Prevention Week (NPPW) beginning on March 18th that year. Legislation passed by Congress in 1961 called on the President to designate the third week of March as NPPW. The objective was to … more
Did you know that the skin is not a tissue? It’s actually the largest organ of the body. Skin and its derivatives (hair, nails, specialized nerve endings as well as sweat and oil glands) make up the integumentary system, which has three main functions: protection, regulation and sensation. Here are some other fascinating facts: Your … more
You wake up one morning with nausea, abdominal cramps and diarrhea. You realize it must be caused by the past-its-prime chicken you ate last night. More than likely, you have food poisoning. This extremely common illness is caused by eating contaminated food. It is estimated that one in six Americans will suffer from a case … more
After a long winter and a rainy spring, summertime in Illinois is great time of year. Picnics, BBQ, hiking, festivals and lots of outdoor fun with friends and family make the Prairie State the place to be. With all the activity however, sometimes small children will eat non-food products and chemicals as they explore new … more
Recently, I saw a headline that made my mouth drop: It’s been 10 years since the debut of what many consider to be the greatest television drama of all time, Breaking Bad! Since becoming a specialist here at the Illinois Poison Center, I’ve developed a newfound appreciation for the series because of the central role … more
Your emergency department patient ingested an unknown amount of an unidentified over-the-counter analgesic. Your toddler took a bite out of your deodorant stick. You accidentally took your mother’s heart medication instead of your allergy medicine. Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters! Oops, wrong blog. Let’s try that again. Who you gonna call? The Illinois Poison Center … more
Halloween is a real treat for humans, but not so much for our pets. Did you know that chocolate is toxic to all mammals, but only dogs will eat a potentially fatal amount? The darker the chocolate, the worse it is for a dog, since milk chocolate and white chocolate are diluted with other ingredients.
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 … more