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Poisoning

Introduction

Poisoning is the harmful effect that occurs when a toxic substance enters the body system through :

  • Swallowing
  • Inhalation
  • Contact with the skin or eyes.

Common substances involved are :

  • Drugs
  • Household product
  • Gases
  • Agricultural products
  • Industrial chemicals

What are the features of poisoning?

The symptoms depend on the type of poison, the amount taken, and the age of person who takes it. Some poisons produce symptoms within seconds, whereas others produce symptoms only after hours or even days. Common symptoms are :

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Abdominal cramp
  • Difficulty in breathing

What are the consequences of poisoning?

The damage caused by poisoning depends on the poison, the amount taken, the age and underlying health of the person who takes it.

What should I do to help victims?

The initial measures would depend on the type of poison.

  • Remove the victim from the source quickly
  • Remove contaminated clothing immediately.
  • Thoroughly wash the affected area with water

Bring the patient to hospital immediately. Identify the type of poison and give it to the doctor.

What should I do to prevent poisoning?

  • Read labels properly before taking or giving any drugs.
  • Take drugs as instructed by doctors
  • Wear protective equipment when handling any chemical substances
  • Ensure the poison/toxic material stored safely
Last Reviewed : 26 April 2012
Writer : Dr. Muhammad Fadhli Mohd Yusoff
  : Dr. Ahmad Tajuddin Mohamad Nor
Reviewer : Dr. Muhaini Othman