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Toxicology of Plants

Toxic plants Plants Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic produce a vast and complicated array of chemical compounds in order to protect themselves. These compounds include amatoxins, tropane alkaloids, urushiol, amygdalin Amygdalin A cyanogenic glycoside found in the seeds of rosaceae. Cyanide Poisoning, and cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) glycosides. The clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor varies depending on the chemical involved, and some of these chemicals are capable of causing life-threatening conditions. The diagnosis is generally based on the exposure Exposure ABCDE Assessment history and clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor. Early recognition is critical to allow prompt supportive therapy and administration of antidotes (if available).

Last updated: Aug 18, 2021

Editorial responsibility: Stanley Oiseth, Lindsay Jones, Evelin Maza

Amanita phalloides

Etiology

A. phalloides is the most toxic of the world’s cyclopeptide-containing mushrooms Mushrooms Mycology.

  • Also known as “death cap” mushroom
  • Responsible for 90% of fatal mushroom poisonings worldwide
  • Appearance:
    • Pale, yellowish, or olive-green
    • Symmetric cap and stem
    • Bulbous base
    • Free, white lamellae
    • Resemble several edible mushrooms Mushrooms Mycology
Toxic mushroom

Amanita phalloides mushroom

Image: “Amanita Phalloides” by _Alicja_ . License: Pixabay License

Pathophysiology

The toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation of A. phalloides is caused by amatoxins and phallotoxins. 

Amatoxins:

  • Cyclic octapeptide (primarily alpha-amanitin)
  • Heat Heat Inflammation stable and water insoluble
  • Inhibit RNA RNA A polynucleotide consisting essentially of chains with a repeating backbone of phosphate and ribose units to which nitrogenous bases are attached. RNA is unique among biological macromolecules in that it can encode genetic information, serve as an abundant structural component of cells, and also possesses catalytic activity. RNA Types and Structure polymerase II → interfere with protein synthesis Synthesis Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) apoptosis Apoptosis A regulated cell death mechanism characterized by distinctive morphologic changes in the nucleus and cytoplasm, including the endonucleolytic cleavage of genomic DNA, at regularly spaced, internucleosomal sites, I.e., DNA fragmentation. It is genetically-programmed and serves as a balance to mitosis in regulating the size of animal tissues and in mediating pathologic processes associated with tumor growth. Ischemic Cell Damage
  • Responsible for hepatic, renal, and encephalopathic effects 

Phalloidin:

  • Cyclic heptapeptide
  • Interrupts the actin Actin Filamentous proteins that are the main constituent of the thin filaments of muscle fibers. The filaments (known also as filamentous or f-actin) can be dissociated into their globular subunits; each subunit is composed of a single polypeptide 375 amino acids long. This is known as globular or g-actin. In conjunction with myosins, actin is responsible for the contraction and relaxation of muscle. Skeletal Muscle Contraction polymerization–depolymerization cycle Cycle The type of signal that ends the inspiratory phase delivered by the ventilator Invasive Mechanical Ventilation and impairs cell membrane Cell Membrane A cell membrane (also known as the plasma membrane or plasmalemma) is a biological membrane that separates the cell contents from the outside environment. A cell membrane is composed of a phospholipid bilayer and proteins that function to protect cellular DNA and mediate the exchange of ions and molecules. The Cell: Cell Membrane function
  • Causes self-limited gastroenteritis-like effects 6–12 hours after ingestion

Clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor

Toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation occurs over several days and usually develops in 3 characteristic stages:

Stage I: 

  • Occurs 6–12 hours after ingestion and appears to resolve within 24 hours
  • Symptoms: 
  • Potential consequences:
    • Dehydration Dehydration The condition that results from excessive loss of water from a living organism. Volume Depletion and Dehydration
    • Hypovolemia Hypovolemia Sepsis in Children
    • Acute renal failure Renal failure Conditions in which the kidneys perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate urine, and maintain electrolyte balance; blood pressure; and calcium metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of proteinuria) and reduction in glomerular filtration rate. Crush Syndrome
    • Shock Shock Shock is a life-threatening condition associated with impaired circulation that results in tissue hypoxia. The different types of shock are based on the underlying cause: distributive (↑ cardiac output (CO), ↓ systemic vascular resistance (SVR)), cardiogenic (↓ CO, ↑ SVR), hypovolemic (↓ CO, ↑ SVR), obstructive (↓ CO), and mixed. Types of Shock

Stage II:

  • May appear to improve clinically
  • Ongoing liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy damage is occurring, as seen by laboratory abnormalities.
  • This stage may last 2–3 days.

Stage III:

  • Liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy failure:
    • Hypoglycemia Hypoglycemia Hypoglycemia is an emergency condition defined as a serum glucose level ≤ 70 mg/dL (≤ 3.9 mmol/L) in diabetic patients. In nondiabetic patients, there is no specific or defined limit for normal serum glucose levels, and hypoglycemia is defined mainly by its clinical features. Hypoglycemia
    • Coagulopathy
    • Encephalopathy Encephalopathy Hyper-IgM Syndrome
  • Multiorgan dysfunction:
    • Renal failure Renal failure Conditions in which the kidneys perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate urine, and maintain electrolyte balance; blood pressure; and calcium metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of proteinuria) and reduction in glomerular filtration rate. Crush Syndrome
    • Pancreatitis Pancreatitis Inflammation of the pancreas. Pancreatitis is classified as acute unless there are computed tomographic or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatographic findings of chronic pancreatitis. The two most common forms of acute pancreatitis are alcoholic pancreatitis and gallstone pancreatitis. Acute Pancreatitis
  • Death may occur 1–2 weeks after the ingestion.

Diagnosis

The diagnosis typically relies on the history and presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor.

Laboratory abnormalities:

  • Stage I ( dehydration Dehydration The condition that results from excessive loss of water from a living organism. Volume Depletion and Dehydration):
    • Hypokalemia Hypokalemia Hypokalemia is defined as plasma potassium (K+) concentration < 3.5 mEq/L. Homeostatic mechanisms maintain plasma concentration between 3.5-5.2 mEq/L despite marked variation in dietary intake. Hypokalemia can be due to renal losses, GI losses, transcellular shifts, or poor dietary intake. Hypokalemia
    • Metabolic acidosis Metabolic acidosis The renal system is responsible for eliminating the daily load of non-volatile acids, which is approximately 70 millimoles per day. Metabolic acidosis occurs when there is an increase in the levels of new non-volatile acids (e.g., lactic acid), renal loss of HCO3-, or ingestion of toxic alcohols. Metabolic Acidosis
  • Stages II and III (multiorgan dysfunction):
    • ↑ Serum aminotransferase levels 
    • ↑ PT and aPTT
    • Lipase Lipase An enzyme of the hydrolase class that catalyzes the reaction of triacylglycerol and water to yield diacylglycerol and a fatty acid anion. It is produced by glands on the tongue and by the pancreas and initiates the digestion of dietary fats. Malabsorption and Maldigestion and amylase Amylase A group of amylolytic enzymes that cleave starch, glycogen, and related alpha-1, 4-glucans. Digestion and Absorption
    • ↑ Creatinine

Amatoxin levels:

  • Not routinely available, but may be available through reference laboratories
  • Urine Urine Liquid by-product of excretion produced in the kidneys, temporarily stored in the bladder until discharge through the urethra. Bowen Disease and Erythroplasia of Queyrat testing is preferred.

Management

No definitive antidote Antidote An antidote is a substance that counteracts poisoning or toxicity. Substances that can cause poisoning include heavy metals (from occupation, treatments, or diet), alcohols, environmental toxins, and medications. Antidotes of Common Poisonings is available, so management is largely supportive.

  • Consultation with poison control
  • Gastric decontamination (activated charcoal Charcoal An amorphous form of carbon prepared from the incomplete combustion of animal or vegetable matter, e.g., wood. The activated form of charcoal is used in the treatment of poisoning. Antidotes of Common Poisonings)
  • Aggressive IV fluid hydration for gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and intestines, commonly caused by infections from bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Transmission may be foodborne, fecal-oral, or through animal contact. Common clinical features include abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and dehydration. Gastroenteritis
  • Correct electrolyte abnormalities
  • Therapy to decrease amatoxin uptake:
    • Silibinin dihemisuccinate
    • Penicillin G Penicillin G A penicillin derivative commonly used in the form of its sodium or potassium salts in the treatment of a variety of infections. It is effective against most gram-positive bacteria and against gram-negative cocci. It has also been used as an experimental convulsant because of its actions on gamma-aminobutyric acid mediated synaptic transmission. Penicillins
  • Antioxidant therapy for hepatotoxicity Hepatotoxicity Acetaminophen:
    • N-acetylcysteine
    • Cimetidine Cimetidine A histamine congener, it competitively inhibits histamine binding to histamine h2 receptors. Cimetidine has a range of pharmacological actions. It inhibits gastric acid secretion, as well as pepsin and gastrin output. Antihistamines
    • Vitamin C Vitamin C A six carbon compound related to glucose. It is found naturally in citrus fruits and many vegetables. Ascorbic acid is an essential nutrient in human diets, and necessary to maintain connective tissue and bone. Its biologically active form, vitamin C, functions as a reducing agent and coenzyme in several metabolic pathways. Vitamin C is considered an antioxidant. Water-soluble Vitamins and their Deficiencies
  • Liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy transplantation for liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy failure

Tropane Alkaloid Plants

Etiology

  • The tropane alkaloids include:
    • Atropine Atropine An alkaloid, originally from atropa belladonna, but found in other plants, mainly solanaceae. Hyoscyamine is the 3(s)-endo isomer of atropine. Anticholinergic Drugs
    • Scopolamine Scopolamine An alkaloid from solanaceae, especially datura and scopolia. Scopolamine and its quaternary derivatives act as antimuscarinics like atropine, but may have more central nervous system effects. Its many uses include an anesthetic premedication, the treatment of urinary incontinence and motion sickness, an antispasmodic, and a mydriatic and cycloplegic. Antiemetics
    • Hyoscyamine Hyoscyamine The 3(s)-endo isomer of atropine. Anticholinergic Drugs
  • Tropane alkaloid plants Plants Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic represent a very diverse group:
    • Datura species (jimson weed, angel’s trumpet, thorn apple)
    • Hyoscyamus niger (henbane)
    • Atropa belladonna (deadly nightshade)
    • Mandragora officinarum (mandrake)
  • These plants Plants Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic have historically been used for their hallucinogenic and medicinal properties.

Pathophysiology

Toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation from tropane alkaloids causes anticholinergic Anticholinergic Anticholinergic drugs block the effect of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at the muscarinic receptors in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Anticholinergic agents inhibit the parasympathetic nervous system, resulting in effects on the smooth muscle in the respiratory tract, vascular system, urinary tract, GI tract, and pupils of the eyes. Anticholinergic Drugs poisoning through antagonism of central and peripheral muscarinic receptors Receptors Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors.

Clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor

Symptoms usually occur 30–60 minutes after ingestion and may continue for 24–48 hours, manifesting as a classic anticholinergic Anticholinergic Anticholinergic drugs block the effect of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at the muscarinic receptors in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Anticholinergic agents inhibit the parasympathetic nervous system, resulting in effects on the smooth muscle in the respiratory tract, vascular system, urinary tract, GI tract, and pupils of the eyes. Anticholinergic Drugs toxidrome Toxidrome A toxidrome describes a group of signs, symptoms, and/or characteristic effects associated with exposure to a particular substance or class of substances. General Principles of Toxidromes.

  • Tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children
  • Hyperthermia
  • Dilated pupils → blurred vision Vision Ophthalmic Exam
  • Urinary retention Urinary retention Inability to empty the urinary bladder with voiding (urination). Delirium
  • Hot, dry, flushed skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions
  • Dry mucous membranes
  • Neurologic signs and symptoms:
    • Disorientation Disorientation St. Louis Encephalitis Virus
    • Delirium Delirium Delirium is a medical condition characterized by acute disturbances in attention and awareness. Symptoms may fluctuate during the course of a day and involve memory deficits and disorientation. Delirium
    • Hallucinations Hallucinations Subjectively experienced sensations in the absence of an appropriate stimulus, but which are regarded by the individual as real. They may be of organic origin or associated with mental disorders. Schizophrenia
    • Psychosis
    • Seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures

Mnemonic:

The presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor of an anticholinergic Anticholinergic Anticholinergic drugs block the effect of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at the muscarinic receptors in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Anticholinergic agents inhibit the parasympathetic nervous system, resulting in effects on the smooth muscle in the respiratory tract, vascular system, urinary tract, GI tract, and pupils of the eyes. Anticholinergic Drugs toxidrome Toxidrome A toxidrome describes a group of signs, symptoms, and/or characteristic effects associated with exposure to a particular substance or class of substances. General Principles of Toxidromes can be remembered with:

  • “Red as beet” (flushed skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions)
  • “Blind as a bat” ( mydriasis Mydriasis Dilation of pupils to greater than 6 mm combined with failure of the pupils to constrict when stimulated with light. This condition may occur due to injury of the pupillary fibers in the oculomotor nerve, in acute angle-closure glaucoma, and in adie syndrome. Glaucoma)
  • “Dry as a bone Bone Bone is a compact type of hardened connective tissue composed of bone cells, membranes, an extracellular mineralized matrix, and central bone marrow. The 2 primary types of bone are compact and spongy. Bones: Structure and Types” (dry mucous membranes)
  • “Hot as a hare” (anhidrosis)
  • “Mad as hatter” ( altered mental status Altered Mental Status Sepsis in Children)
  • “Full as a flask” ( urinary retention Urinary retention Inability to empty the urinary bladder with voiding (urination). Delirium)

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of tropane alkaloid toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation is clinical.

Management

  • Assess and address the patient’s airway Airway ABCDE Assessment, breathing, and circulation Circulation The movement of the blood as it is pumped through the cardiovascular system. ABCDE Assessment (ABC assessment).
  • Consider gastric decontamination.
  • Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines work on the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor to produce inhibitory effects on the CNS. Benzodiazepines do not mimic GABA, the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in humans, but instead potentiate GABA activity. Benzodiazepines for seizure and agitation Agitation A feeling of restlessness associated with increased motor activity. This may occur as a manifestation of nervous system drug toxicity or other conditions. St. Louis Encephalitis Virus
  • Physostigmine Physostigmine A cholinesterase inhibitor that is rapidly absorbed through membranes. It can be applied topically to the conjunctiva. It also can cross the blood-brain barrier and is used when central nervous system effects are desired, as in the treatment of severe anticholinergic toxicity. Cholinomimetic Drugs is the antidote Antidote An antidote is a substance that counteracts poisoning or toxicity. Substances that can cause poisoning include heavy metals (from occupation, treatments, or diet), alcohols, environmental toxins, and medications. Antidotes of Common Poisonings.

Toxicodendron Plants

Etiology

  • Members of the plant genus, Toxicodendron
  • In North America, this includes:
    • Poison ivy (T. rydbergii, T. radicans)
    • Poison oak (T. diversilobum, T. toxicarium)
    • Poison sumac (T. vernix)
Poison ivy

Toxicodendron radicans, also known as poison ivy, with the classic three leaflets

Image: “Poison Ivy” by SWMNPoliSciProject. License: CC BY 3.0

Pathophysiology

  • Toxicodendron species contain the oleoresin urushiol.
  • Contact with the skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions type IV hypersensitivity reaction Type IV hypersensitivity reaction Type IV hypersensitivity reaction, or delayed-type hypersensitivity, is a cell-mediated response to antigen exposure. The reaction involves T cells, not antibodies, and develops over several days. Presensitized T cells initiate the immune defense, leading to tissue damage. Type IV Hypersensitivity Reaction

Clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor

An acute allergic dermatitis Dermatitis Any inflammation of the skin. Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema) generally occurs within 4–96 hours, and complete resolution is expected within 7–21 days. Characteristics of the rash Rash Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever include:

Blisters from contact with poison ivy

Blisters ( bullae Bullae Erythema Multiforme) on the arm Arm The arm, or “upper arm” in common usage, is the region of the upper limb that extends from the shoulder to the elbow joint and connects inferiorly to the forearm through the cubital fossa. It is divided into 2 fascial compartments (anterior and posterior). Arm: Anatomy from contact with poison ivy

Image: “Blisters from contact with poison ivy” by Larsonja. License: Public DOmain

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of Toxicodendron dermatitis Dermatitis Any inflammation of the skin. Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema) is based on exposure Exposure ABCDE Assessment history and physical exam.

Management

  • Clean all clothing and objects that may be contaminated with urushiol.
  • Soothing measures
    • Oatmeal baths
    • Cold compresses
    • Calamine (a combination of zinc Zinc A metallic element of atomic number 30 and atomic weight 65. 38. It is a necessary trace element in the diet, forming an essential part of many enzymes, and playing an important role in protein synthesis and in cell division. Zinc deficiency is associated with anemia, short stature, hypogonadism, impaired wound healing, and geophagia. It is known by the symbol zn. Trace Elements oxide and ferric oxide)
    • Burow’s solution (an aqueous solution of aluminum triacetate)
  • Oral antihistamines Antihistamines Antihistamines are drugs that target histamine receptors, particularly H1 and H2 receptors. H1 antagonists are competitive and reversible inhibitors of H1 receptors. First-generation antihistamines cross the blood-brain barrier and can cause sedation. Antihistamines
  • Topical corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis
  • Systemic steroids Steroids A group of polycyclic compounds closely related biochemically to terpenes. They include cholesterol, numerous hormones, precursors of certain vitamins, bile acids, alcohols (sterols), and certain natural drugs and poisons. Steroids have a common nucleus, a fused, reduced 17-carbon atom ring system, cyclopentanoperhydrophenanthrene. Most steroids also have two methyl groups and an aliphatic side-chain attached to the nucleus. Benign Liver Tumors for severe dermatitis Dermatitis Any inflammation of the skin. Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema)

Cyanide Plants

Etiology

Many plants Plants Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic contain cyanogenic glycosides, such as amygdalin Amygdalin A cyanogenic glycoside found in the seeds of rosaceae. Cyanide Poisoning.

  • Pits or seeds from: 
    • Cherry
    • Apricot
    • Peach
    • Plum
    • Pear
    • Apple
  • Lima beans
  • Clover
  • Sorghum
  • Almonds

Pathophysiology

  • Chewing seeds and pits is required for toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation.
  • Amygdalin Amygdalin A cyanogenic glycoside found in the seeds of rosaceae. Cyanide Poisoning is ingested → converted to hydrogen cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning by gut bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology → enters bloodstream
  • Inactivates cytochrome oxidase Oxidase Neisseria → inhibits aerobic metabolism and ATP production
  • Tissues cannot use available oxygen → functional hypoxia Hypoxia Sub-optimal oxygen levels in the ambient air of living organisms. Ischemic Cell Damage 
  • Anaerobic metabolism takes over → lactic acid production

Clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor

Signs and symptoms of cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning poisoning are delayed until several hours after ingestion, but may include:

  • Cardiovascular:
    • Initial tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children bradycardia Bradycardia Bradyarrhythmia is a rhythm in which the heart rate is less than 60/min. Bradyarrhythmia can be physiologic, without symptoms or hemodynamic change. Pathologic bradyarrhythmia results in reduced cardiac output and hemodynamic instability causing syncope, dizziness, or dyspnea. Bradyarrhythmias → circulatory collapse
    • Hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension
    • Dysrhythmias
  • Respiratory:
    • Hyperventilation Hyperventilation A pulmonary ventilation rate faster than is metabolically necessary for the exchange of gases. It is the result of an increased frequency of breathing, an increased tidal volume, or a combination of both. It causes an excess intake of oxygen and the blowing off of carbon dioxide. Respiratory Alkalosis (attempted compensation Compensation Respiratory Acidosis for metabolic acidosis Metabolic acidosis The renal system is responsible for eliminating the daily load of non-volatile acids, which is approximately 70 millimoles per day. Metabolic acidosis occurs when there is an increase in the levels of new non-volatile acids (e.g., lactic acid), renal loss of HCO3-, or ingestion of toxic alcohols. Metabolic Acidosis)
    • Respiratory depression and failure 
  • Neurologic:
    • Headache Headache The symptom of pain in the cranial region. It may be an isolated benign occurrence or manifestation of a wide variety of headache disorders. Brain Abscess
    • Dizziness Dizziness An imprecise term which may refer to a sense of spatial disorientation, motion of the environment, or lightheadedness. Lateral Medullary Syndrome (Wallenberg Syndrome)
    • Seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures
    • Coma Coma Coma is defined as a deep state of unarousable unresponsiveness, characterized by a score of 3 points on the GCS. A comatose state can be caused by a multitude of conditions, making the precise epidemiology and prognosis of coma difficult to determine. Coma
    • Anoxic brain injury Anoxic Brain Injury Persistent Vegetative State
  • GI:
    • Nausea Nausea An unpleasant sensation in the stomach usually accompanied by the urge to vomit. Common causes are early pregnancy, sea and motion sickness, emotional stress, intense pain, food poisoning, and various enteroviruses. Antiemetics and vomiting Vomiting The forcible expulsion of the contents of the stomach through the mouth. Hypokalemia 
    • Abdominal pain Abdominal Pain Acute Abdomen
  • Other:
    • Renal failure Renal failure Conditions in which the kidneys perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate urine, and maintain electrolyte balance; blood pressure; and calcium metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of proteinuria) and reduction in glomerular filtration rate. Crush Syndrome
    • Hepatic necrosis Necrosis The death of cells in an organ or tissue due to disease, injury or failure of the blood supply. Ischemic Cell Damage
    • Rhabdomyolysis Rhabdomyolysis Rhabdomyolysis is characterized by muscle necrosis and the release of toxic intracellular contents, especially myoglobin, into the circulation. Rhabdomyolysis
    • Pink or cherry-red skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions (uncommon)

Diagnosis

The diagnosis is generally based on the clinical history and examination. The following may support the diagnosis.

  • Anion gap Anion gap Metabolic Acidosis metabolic acidosis Metabolic acidosis The renal system is responsible for eliminating the daily load of non-volatile acids, which is approximately 70 millimoles per day. Metabolic acidosis occurs when there is an increase in the levels of new non-volatile acids (e.g., lactic acid), renal loss of HCO3-, or ingestion of toxic alcohols. Metabolic Acidosis
  • ↑ Lactic acid
  • Cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning level: 
    • Usually not available in time to be of benefit
    • Confirms cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation

Management

  • ABC assessment
  • Supportive management:
    • IV fluid hydration
    • Vasopressors Vasopressors Sepsis in Children for hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension
    • Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines work on the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor to produce inhibitory effects on the CNS. Benzodiazepines do not mimic GABA, the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in humans, but instead potentiate GABA activity. Benzodiazepines for seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures
  • Gastric decontamination
  • Antidotes:
    • Hydroxocobalamin (1st-line treatment) 
      • Precursor of vitamin B12
      • Binds cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning
    • Amyl nitrite Amyl nitrite A vasodilator that is administered by inhalation. It is also used recreationally due to its supposed ability to induce euphoria and act as an aphrodisiac. Nitrates or sodium nitrite Sodium nitrite Nitrous acid sodium salt. Used in many industrial processes, in meat curing, coloring, and preserving, and as a reagent in analytical chemistry techniques. It is used therapeutically as an antidote in cyanide poisoning. The compound is toxic and mutagenic and will react in vivo with secondary or tertiary amines thereby producing highly carcinogenic nitrosamines. Nitrates
      • Induce methemoglobinemia Methemoglobinemia Methemoglobinemia is a condition characterized by elevated levels of methemoglobin in the blood. Methemoglobin is the oxidized form of hemoglobin, where the heme iron has been converted from the usual ferrous (Fe2+) to the ferric (Fe3+) form. The Fe3+ form of iron cannot bind O2, and, thus, leads to tissue hypoxia. Methemoglobinemia
      • Provide alternative binding site for cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning 
    • Sodium thiosulfate Sodium Thiosulfate Cyanide Poisoning
      • ↑ Availability of sulfur donors for rhodanese
      • Transforms cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning to thiocyanate → excreted by kidneys Kidneys The kidneys are a pair of bean-shaped organs located retroperitoneally against the posterior wall of the abdomen on either side of the spine. As part of the urinary tract, the kidneys are responsible for blood filtration and excretion of water-soluble waste in the urine. Kidneys: Anatomy

Cardiac Glycoside Plants

Etiology

Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) glycosides are found in a number of plants Plants Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic, including:

  • Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea and D. lanata)
  • Oleander (Nerium oleander and Thevetia peruviana)
  • Lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis)
  • Squill (Urginea maritima and U. indica)
  • Ouabain (Strophanthus gratus)
  • Dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum)
  • Wallflower (Cheiranthus cheiri)

Pathophysiology

Consuming plant parts or teas brewed from these plants Plants Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic can lead to toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation.

  • Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) glycosides bind BIND Hyperbilirubinemia of the Newborn to a cell membrane Cell Membrane A cell membrane (also known as the plasma membrane or plasmalemma) is a biological membrane that separates the cell contents from the outside environment. A cell membrane is composed of a phospholipid bilayer and proteins that function to protect cellular DNA and mediate the exchange of ions and molecules. The Cell: Cell Membrane → reversible inhibition of the Na–K– adenosine Adenosine A nucleoside that is composed of adenine and d-ribose. Adenosine or adenosine derivatives play many important biological roles in addition to being components of DNA and RNA. Adenosine itself is a neurotransmitter. Class 5 Antiarrhythmic Drugs triphosphatase pump Pump ACES and RUSH: Resuscitation Ultrasound Protocols
  • This process leads to:
    • ↑ Intracellular Na → ↑ intracellular calcium Calcium A basic element found in nearly all tissues. It is a member of the alkaline earth family of metals with the atomic symbol ca, atomic number 20, and atomic weight 40. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and combines with phosphorus to form calcium phosphate in the bones and teeth. It is essential for the normal functioning of nerves and muscles and plays a role in blood coagulation (as factor IV) and in many enzymatic processes. Electrolytes → dysrhythmia
    • ↓ Intracellular K

Clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor

Signs and symptoms of cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) glycoside toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation include:

Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR):

  • Palpitations Palpitations Ebstein’s Anomaly
  • Bradycardia Bradycardia Bradyarrhythmia is a rhythm in which the heart rate is less than 60/min. Bradyarrhythmia can be physiologic, without symptoms or hemodynamic change. Pathologic bradyarrhythmia results in reduced cardiac output and hemodynamic instability causing syncope, dizziness, or dyspnea. Bradyarrhythmias
  • Arrhythmia:
    • Premature Premature Childbirth before 37 weeks of pregnancy (259 days from the first day of the mother’s last menstrual period, or 245 days after fertilization). Necrotizing Enterocolitis ventricular contractions
    • Atrioventricular block Atrioventricular block Atrioventricular (AV) block is a bradyarrhythmia caused by delay, or interruption, in the electrical conduction between the atria and the ventricles. Atrioventricular block occurs due to either anatomic or functional impairment, and is classified into 3 types. Atrioventricular block (AV block)
    • Junctional rhythms
    • Ventricular tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children or fibrillation
  • Chest pressure
  • Dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea
  • Light-headedness

GI symptoms: 

  • Nausea Nausea An unpleasant sensation in the stomach usually accompanied by the urge to vomit. Common causes are early pregnancy, sea and motion sickness, emotional stress, intense pain, food poisoning, and various enteroviruses. Antiemetics and vomiting Vomiting The forcible expulsion of the contents of the stomach through the mouth. Hypokalemia
  • Abdominal pain Abdominal Pain Acute Abdomen

Neurologic symptoms: 

Diagnosis

The diagnosis will be suspected because of the history and clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor and supported by the workup.

  • Digoxin Digoxin A cardiotonic glycoside obtained mainly from digitalis lanata; it consists of three sugars and the aglycone digoxigenin. Digoxin has positive inotropic and negative chronotropic activity. It is used to control ventricular rate in atrial fibrillation and in the management of congestive heart failure with atrial fibrillation. Its use in congestive heart failure and sinus rhythm is less certain. The margin between toxic and therapeutic doses is small. Cardiac Glycosides level:
    • Some plant glycosides can cross-react with digoxin Digoxin A cardiotonic glycoside obtained mainly from digitalis lanata; it consists of three sugars and the aglycone digoxigenin. Digoxin has positive inotropic and negative chronotropic activity. It is used to control ventricular rate in atrial fibrillation and in the management of congestive heart failure with atrial fibrillation. Its use in congestive heart failure and sinus rhythm is less certain. The margin between toxic and therapeutic doses is small. Cardiac Glycosides assays.
    • A negative level does not rule out cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) glycoside exposure Exposure ABCDE Assessment.
  • Hyperkalemia Hyperkalemia Hyperkalemia is defined as a serum potassium (K+) concentration >5.2 mEq/L. Homeostatic mechanisms maintain the serum K+ concentration between 3.5 and 5.2 mEq/L, despite marked variation in dietary intake. Hyperkalemia can be due to a variety of causes, which include transcellular shifts, tissue breakdown, inadequate renal excretion, and drugs. Hyperkalemia
  • ECG ECG An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a graphic representation of the electrical activity of the heart plotted against time. Adhesive electrodes are affixed to the skin surface allowing measurement of cardiac impulses from many angles. The ECG provides 3-dimensional information about the conduction system of the heart, the myocardium, and other cardiac structures. Electrocardiogram (ECG) to assess for arrhythmia

Management

  • ABC assessment
  • Supportive management:
    • Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) monitoring
    • Atropine Atropine An alkaloid, originally from atropa belladonna, but found in other plants, mainly solanaceae. Hyoscyamine is the 3(s)-endo isomer of atropine. Anticholinergic Drugs for symptomatic bradycardia Bradycardia Bradyarrhythmia is a rhythm in which the heart rate is less than 60/min. Bradyarrhythmia can be physiologic, without symptoms or hemodynamic change. Pathologic bradyarrhythmia results in reduced cardiac output and hemodynamic instability causing syncope, dizziness, or dyspnea. Bradyarrhythmias
    • Appropriate management of life-threatening arrhythmias
    • Electrolyte monitoring and correction of life-threatening hyperkalemia Hyperkalemia Hyperkalemia is defined as a serum potassium (K+) concentration >5.2 mEq/L. Homeostatic mechanisms maintain the serum K+ concentration between 3.5 and 5.2 mEq/L, despite marked variation in dietary intake. Hyperkalemia can be due to a variety of causes, which include transcellular shifts, tissue breakdown, inadequate renal excretion, and drugs. Hyperkalemia
  • Gastric decontamination
  • Antidote Antidote An antidote is a substance that counteracts poisoning or toxicity. Substances that can cause poisoning include heavy metals (from occupation, treatments, or diet), alcohols, environmental toxins, and medications. Antidotes of Common Poisonings: digoxin-specific antibody fragments Digoxin-Specific Antibody Fragments Cardiac Glycosides ( Fab Fab Univalent antigen-binding fragments composed of one entire immunoglobulin light chain and the amino terminal end of one of the immunoglobulin heavy chains from the hinge region, linked to each other by disulfide bonds. Fab contains the immunoglobulin variable regions, which are part of the antigen-binding site, and the first immunoglobulin constant regions. This fragment can be obtained by digestion of immunoglobulins with the proteolytic enzyme papain. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions)

Comparative Chart of Toxic Plants

Table: Clinical features and management of toxic plant exposure Exposure ABCDE Assessment
Plant Clinical features Emergency management
Amanita phalloides (death cap mushroom) Alpha-amanitin toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation:
  • Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and intestines, commonly caused by infections from bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Transmission may be foodborne, fecal-oral, or through animal contact. Common clinical features include abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and dehydration. Gastroenteritis
  • Severe hepatotoxicity Hepatotoxicity Acetaminophen
  • Multiorgan dysfunction
  • No definitive antidote Antidote An antidote is a substance that counteracts poisoning or toxicity. Substances that can cause poisoning include heavy metals (from occupation, treatments, or diet), alcohols, environmental toxins, and medications. Antidotes of Common Poisonings is available.
  • Gastric decontamination
  • Supportive care
  • Liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy transplantation for liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy failure
Atropa belladonna, jimson weed Anticholinergic toxicity Anticholinergic Toxicity Adverse drug effects associated with cholinergic antagonists. Clinical features include tachycardia; hyperthermia; mydriasis, dry skin and dry mucous membranes, decreased bowel sounds and urinary retention in peripheral anticholinergic syndrome; and hallucinations; psychoses; seizures; and coma in central anticholinergic syndrome. General Principles of Toxidromes:
  • Tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children
  • Anhidrosis
  • Mydriasis Mydriasis Dilation of pupils to greater than 6 mm combined with failure of the pupils to constrict when stimulated with light. This condition may occur due to injury of the pupillary fibers in the oculomotor nerve, in acute angle-closure glaucoma, and in adie syndrome. Glaucoma
  • Urinary retention Urinary retention Inability to empty the urinary bladder with voiding (urination). Delirium
  • Altered mental status Altered Mental Status Sepsis in Children
  • Physostigmine Physostigmine A cholinesterase inhibitor that is rapidly absorbed through membranes. It can be applied topically to the conjunctiva. It also can cross the blood-brain barrier and is used when central nervous system effects are desired, as in the treatment of severe anticholinergic toxicity. Cholinomimetic Drugs
  • Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines work on the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor to produce inhibitory effects on the CNS. Benzodiazepines do not mimic GABA, the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in humans, but instead potentiate GABA activity. Benzodiazepines for agitation Agitation A feeling of restlessness associated with increased motor activity. This may occur as a manifestation of nervous system drug toxicity or other conditions. St. Louis Encephalitis Virus and seizure
Poison ivy, poison oak, poison sumac Type IV hypersensitivity reaction Type IV hypersensitivity reaction Type IV hypersensitivity reaction, or delayed-type hypersensitivity, is a cell-mediated response to antigen exposure. The reaction involves T cells, not antibodies, and develops over several days. Presensitized T cells initiate the immune defense, leading to tissue damage. Type IV Hypersensitivity Reaction: erythematous papules, vesicles Vesicles Female Genitourinary Examination, or bullae Bullae Erythema Multiforme in a linear configuration
Pits or seeds from cherry, apricot, peach, plum, pear, apple Cyanide Cyanide Inorganic salts of hydrogen cyanide containing the -cn radical. The concept also includes isocyanides. It is distinguished from nitriles, which denotes organic compounds containing the -cn radical. Cyanide Poisoning toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation:
  • Hemodynamic instability
  • Dysrhythmia
  • Hyperventilation Hyperventilation A pulmonary ventilation rate faster than is metabolically necessary for the exchange of gases. It is the result of an increased frequency of breathing, an increased tidal volume, or a combination of both. It causes an excess intake of oxygen and the blowing off of carbon dioxide. Respiratory Alkalosis
  • CNS depression
  • Seizure
  • Hydroxocobalamin
  • Sodium nitrite Sodium nitrite Nitrous acid sodium salt. Used in many industrial processes, in meat curing, coloring, and preserving, and as a reagent in analytical chemistry techniques. It is used therapeutically as an antidote in cyanide poisoning. The compound is toxic and mutagenic and will react in vivo with secondary or tertiary amines thereby producing highly carcinogenic nitrosamines. Nitrates
  • Sodium thiosulfate Sodium Thiosulfate Cyanide Poisoning
Lily of the valley, foxglove Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) glycoside toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation:
  • Arrhythmia
  • GI upset
  • Weakness
  • Hyperkalemia Hyperkalemia Hyperkalemia is defined as a serum potassium (K+) concentration >5.2 mEq/L. Homeostatic mechanisms maintain the serum K+ concentration between 3.5 and 5.2 mEq/L, despite marked variation in dietary intake. Hyperkalemia can be due to a variety of causes, which include transcellular shifts, tissue breakdown, inadequate renal excretion, and drugs. Hyperkalemia
Digoxin-specific antibody fragments Digoxin-Specific Antibody Fragments Cardiac Glycosides

Differential Diagnosis

  • Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and intestines, commonly caused by infections from bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Transmission may be foodborne, fecal-oral, or through animal contact. Common clinical features include abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and dehydration. Gastroenteritis: inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation of the stomach Stomach The stomach is a muscular sac in the upper left portion of the abdomen that plays a critical role in digestion. The stomach develops from the foregut and connects the esophagus with the duodenum. Structurally, the stomach is C-shaped and forms a greater and lesser curvature and is divided grossly into regions: the cardia, fundus, body, and pylorus. Stomach: Anatomy and intestines, commonly caused by infections Infections Invasion of the host organism by microorganisms or their toxins or by parasites that can cause pathological conditions or diseases. Chronic Granulomatous Disease from bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology, viruses Viruses Minute infectious agents whose genomes are composed of DNA or RNA, but not both. They are characterized by a lack of independent metabolism and the inability to replicate outside living host cells. Virology, or parasites. Common clinical features of gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and intestines, commonly caused by infections from bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Transmission may be foodborne, fecal-oral, or through animal contact. Common clinical features include abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and dehydration. Gastroenteritis include abdominal pain Abdominal Pain Acute Abdomen, diarrhea Diarrhea Diarrhea is defined as ≥ 3 watery or loose stools in a 24-hour period. There are a multitude of etiologies, which can be classified based on the underlying mechanism of disease. The duration of symptoms (acute or chronic) and characteristics of the stools (e.g., watery, bloody, steatorrheic, mucoid) can help guide further diagnostic evaluation. Diarrhea, vomiting Vomiting The forcible expulsion of the contents of the stomach through the mouth. Hypokalemia, fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, and dehydration Dehydration The condition that results from excessive loss of water from a living organism. Volume Depletion and Dehydration. Diagnostic testing with stool analysis or culture is not always required, but it can help determine the etiology in certain circumstances. Most cases are self-limited; therefore, the only required treatment is supportive therapy (fluids). 
  • Acetaminophen Acetaminophen Acetaminophen is an over-the-counter nonopioid analgesic and antipyretic medication and the most commonly used analgesic worldwide. Despite the widespread use of acetaminophen, its mechanism of action is not entirely understood. Acetaminophen toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation: A toxic ingestion of acetaminophen Acetaminophen Acetaminophen is an over-the-counter nonopioid analgesic and antipyretic medication and the most commonly used analgesic worldwide. Despite the widespread use of acetaminophen, its mechanism of action is not entirely understood. Acetaminophen may lead to severe hepatotoxicity Hepatotoxicity Acetaminophen. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may initially present with symptoms similar to those of gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and intestines, commonly caused by infections from bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Transmission may be foodborne, fecal-oral, or through animal contact. Common clinical features include abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and dehydration. Gastroenteritis. Acetaminophen Acetaminophen Acetaminophen is an over-the-counter nonopioid analgesic and antipyretic medication and the most commonly used analgesic worldwide. Despite the widespread use of acetaminophen, its mechanism of action is not entirely understood. Acetaminophen toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation may progress to liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy failure, renal failure Renal failure Conditions in which the kidneys perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate urine, and maintain electrolyte balance; blood pressure; and calcium metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of proteinuria) and reduction in glomerular filtration rate. Crush Syndrome, and pancreatitis Pancreatitis Inflammation of the pancreas. Pancreatitis is classified as acute unless there are computed tomographic or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatographic findings of chronic pancreatitis. The two most common forms of acute pancreatitis are alcoholic pancreatitis and gallstone pancreatitis. Acute Pancreatitis. An acetaminophen Acetaminophen Acetaminophen is an over-the-counter nonopioid analgesic and antipyretic medication and the most commonly used analgesic worldwide. Despite the widespread use of acetaminophen, its mechanism of action is not entirely understood. Acetaminophen level can help confirm the diagnosis. Gastric decontamination should be attempted, along with N-acetylcysteine therapy. Liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy transplantation may be required for fulminant liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy failure.
  • Viral hepatitis: liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation caused by infection with hepatitis virus Virus Viruses are infectious, obligate intracellular parasites composed of a nucleic acid core surrounded by a protein capsid. Viruses can be either naked (non-enveloped) or enveloped. The classification of viruses is complex and based on many factors, including type and structure of the nucleoid and capsid, the presence of an envelope, the replication cycle, and the host range. Virology: Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may present with a viral prodrome Prodrome Symptoms that appear 24–48 hours prior to migraine onset. Migraine Headache of fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, anorexia Anorexia The lack or loss of appetite accompanied by an aversion to food and the inability to eat. It is the defining characteristic of the disorder anorexia nervosa. Anorexia Nervosa, and nausea Nausea An unpleasant sensation in the stomach usually accompanied by the urge to vomit. Common causes are early pregnancy, sea and motion sickness, emotional stress, intense pain, food poisoning, and various enteroviruses. Antiemetics. RUQ abdominal pain Abdominal Pain Acute Abdomen, jaundice Jaundice Jaundice is the abnormal yellowing of the skin and/or sclera caused by the accumulation of bilirubin. Hyperbilirubinemia is caused by either an increase in bilirubin production or a decrease in the hepatic uptake, conjugation, or excretion of bilirubin. Jaundice, and transaminitis Transaminitis Tick-borne Encephalitis Virus also occur. The diagnosis is made with viral serologic testing. Management of acute hepatitis Acute Hepatitis Autoimmune Hepatitis is supportive.
  • Amphetamine toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation: intoxication with amphetamines Amphetamines Analogs or derivatives of amphetamine. Many are sympathomimetics and central nervous system stimulators causing excitation, vasopressin, bronchodilation, and to varying degrees, anorexia, analepsis, nasal decongestion, and some smooth muscle relaxation. Stimulants causing a sympathomimetic Sympathomimetic Sympathomimetic drugs, also known as adrenergic agonists, mimic the action of the stimulators (α, β, or dopamine receptors) of the sympathetic autonomic nervous system. Sympathomimetic drugs are classified based on the type of receptors the drugs act on (some agents act on several receptors but 1 is predominate). Sympathomimetic Drugs response. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may have tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children, hyperthermia, mydriasis Mydriasis Dilation of pupils to greater than 6 mm combined with failure of the pupils to constrict when stimulated with light. This condition may occur due to injury of the pupillary fibers in the oculomotor nerve, in acute angle-closure glaucoma, and in adie syndrome. Glaucoma, delirium Delirium Delirium is a medical condition characterized by acute disturbances in attention and awareness. Symptoms may fluctuate during the course of a day and involve memory deficits and disorientation. Delirium, seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures, rhabdomyolysis Rhabdomyolysis Rhabdomyolysis is characterized by muscle necrosis and the release of toxic intracellular contents, especially myoglobin, into the circulation. Rhabdomyolysis, and renal failure Renal failure Conditions in which the kidneys perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate urine, and maintain electrolyte balance; blood pressure; and calcium metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of proteinuria) and reduction in glomerular filtration rate. Crush Syndrome. Unlike with anticholinergic toxicity Anticholinergic Toxicity Adverse drug effects associated with cholinergic antagonists. Clinical features include tachycardia; hyperthermia; mydriasis, dry skin and dry mucous membranes, decreased bowel sounds and urinary retention in peripheral anticholinergic syndrome; and hallucinations; psychoses; seizures; and coma in central anticholinergic syndrome. General Principles of Toxidromes, patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship are diaphoretic. The diagnosis is often made clinically and confirmed with a drug screen. Management includes supportive care and benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines work on the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptor to produce inhibitory effects on the CNS. Benzodiazepines do not mimic GABA, the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in humans, but instead potentiate GABA activity. Benzodiazepines.
  • Hyperthyroidism Hyperthyroidism Hypersecretion of thyroid hormones from the thyroid gland. Elevated levels of thyroid hormones increase basal metabolic rate. Thyrotoxicosis and Hyperthyroidism: Elevated levels of free thyroid Thyroid The thyroid gland is one of the largest endocrine glands in the human body. The thyroid gland is a highly vascular, brownish-red gland located in the visceral compartment of the anterior region of the neck. Thyroid Gland: Anatomy hormones Hormones Hormones are messenger molecules that are synthesized in one part of the body and move through the bloodstream to exert specific regulatory effects on another part of the body. Hormones play critical roles in coordinating cellular activities throughout the body in response to the constant changes in both the internal and external environments. Hormones: Overview and Types can result in hypermetabolism. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship can have tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children, palpitations Palpitations Ebstein’s Anomaly, anxiety Anxiety Feelings or emotions of dread, apprehension, and impending disaster but not disabling as with anxiety disorders. Generalized Anxiety Disorder, tremor Tremor Cyclical movement of a body part that can represent either a physiologic process or a manifestation of disease. Intention or action tremor, a common manifestation of cerebellar diseases, is aggravated by movement. In contrast, resting tremor is maximal when there is no attempt at voluntary movement, and occurs as a relatively frequent manifestation of parkinson disease. Myotonic Dystrophies, diaphoresis, and diarrhea Diarrhea Diarrhea is defined as ≥ 3 watery or loose stools in a 24-hour period. There are a multitude of etiologies, which can be classified based on the underlying mechanism of disease. The duration of symptoms (acute or chronic) and characteristics of the stools (e.g., watery, bloody, steatorrheic, mucoid) can help guide further diagnostic evaluation. Diarrhea. The diagnosis is confirmed with thyroid Thyroid The thyroid gland is one of the largest endocrine glands in the human body. The thyroid gland is a highly vascular, brownish-red gland located in the visceral compartment of the anterior region of the neck. Thyroid Gland: Anatomy studies. Management depends on the etiology, but it may include methimazole Methimazole A thioureylene antithyroid agent that inhibits the formation of thyroid hormones by interfering with the incorporation of iodine into tyrosyl residues of thyroglobulin. This is done by interfering with the oxidation of iodide ion and iodotyrosyl groups through inhibition of the peroxidase enzyme. Antithyroid Drugs, beta-blockers Beta-blockers Drugs that bind to but do not activate beta-adrenergic receptors thereby blocking the actions of beta-adrenergic agonists. Adrenergic beta-antagonists are used for treatment of hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, angina pectoris, glaucoma, migraine headaches, and anxiety. Class 2 Antiarrhythmic Drugs (Beta Blockers), radioactive iodine Radioactive iodine Unstable isotopes of iodine that decay or disintegrate emitting radiation. I atoms with atomic weights 117-139, except I 127, are radioactive iodine isotopes. Antithyroid Drugs, and surgery.
  • Contact dermatitis Contact dermatitis A type of acute or chronic skin reaction in which sensitivity is manifested by reactivity to materials or substances coming in contact with the skin. It may involve allergic or non-allergic mechanisms. Male Genitourinary Examination: inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation of the skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions in response to irritants. Pruritus Pruritus An intense itching sensation that produces the urge to rub or scratch the skin to obtain relief. Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema), pain Pain An unpleasant sensation induced by noxious stimuli which are detected by nerve endings of nociceptive neurons. Pain: Types and Pathways, microvesiculation (formation of small vesicles Vesicles Female Genitourinary Examination), and a burning sensation may occur. The diagnosis is clinical. Management involves removing the offending agent and reducing skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation with steroids Steroids A group of polycyclic compounds closely related biochemically to terpenes. They include cholesterol, numerous hormones, precursors of certain vitamins, bile acids, alcohols (sterols), and certain natural drugs and poisons. Steroids have a common nucleus, a fused, reduced 17-carbon atom ring system, cyclopentanoperhydrophenanthrene. Most steroids also have two methyl groups and an aliphatic side-chain attached to the nucleus. Benign Liver Tumors or topical calcineurin inhibitors Calcineurin Inhibitors Compounds that inhibit or block the phosphatase activity of calcineurin. Immunosuppressants.
  • Bullous pemphigoid Bullous pemphigoid Bullous pemphigoid and pemphigus vulgaris are two different blistering autoimmune diseases. In bullous pemphigoid, autoantibodies attack the hemidesmosomes, which connect epidermal keratinocytes to the basement membrane. This attack results in large, tense subepidermal blisters. Bullous Pemphigoid and Pemphigus Vulgaris: autoimmune blistering disease caused by antibodies Antibodies Immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells that act in immune responses by recognizing and binding particular antigens. The various Ig classes are IgG (the most abundant), IgM, IgE, IgD, and IgA, which differ in their biologic features, structure, target specificity, and distribution. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions against hemidesmosomes. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship are usually elderly and present with pruritic, tense, bullous lesions and spared mucosal surfaces. Triggers Triggers Hereditary Angioedema (C1 Esterase Inhibitor Deficiency) include medications, trauma, skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions conditions, and systemic disease. Biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma with immunofluorescent staining is used for diagnosis. Management includes steroids Steroids A group of polycyclic compounds closely related biochemically to terpenes. They include cholesterol, numerous hormones, precursors of certain vitamins, bile acids, alcohols (sterols), and certain natural drugs and poisons. Steroids have a common nucleus, a fused, reduced 17-carbon atom ring system, cyclopentanoperhydrophenanthrene. Most steroids also have two methyl groups and an aliphatic side-chain attached to the nucleus. Benign Liver Tumors, immunosuppressants Immunosuppressants Immunosuppressants are a class of drugs widely used in the management of autoimmune conditions and organ transplant rejection. The general effect is dampening of the immune response. Immunosuppressants, and antiinflammatory medications.
  • Carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide (CO). A poisonous colorless, odorless, tasteless gas. It combines with hemoglobin to form carboxyhemoglobin, which has no oxygen carrying capacity. The resultant oxygen deprivation causes headache, dizziness, decreased pulse and respiratory rates, unconsciousness, and death. Carbon Monoxide Poisoning poisoning: Inhalation of carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide (CO). A poisonous colorless, odorless, tasteless gas. It combines with hemoglobin to form carboxyhemoglobin, which has no oxygen carrying capacity. The resultant oxygen deprivation causes headache, dizziness, decreased pulse and respiratory rates, unconsciousness, and death. Carbon Monoxide Poisoning causes displacement Displacement The process by which an emotional or behavioral response that is appropriate for one situation appears in another situation for which it is inappropriate. Defense Mechanisms of oxygen from the hemoglobin, interfering with aerobic metabolism. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may suffer from headache Headache The symptom of pain in the cranial region. It may be an isolated benign occurrence or manifestation of a wide variety of headache disorders. Brain Abscess, nausea Nausea An unpleasant sensation in the stomach usually accompanied by the urge to vomit. Common causes are early pregnancy, sea and motion sickness, emotional stress, intense pain, food poisoning, and various enteroviruses. Antiemetics, dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea, loss of consciousness, and seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures. Skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions color may be cherry-red, though this is usually seen postmortem. An elevated carboxyhemoglobin Carboxyhemoglobin Carbon Monoxide Poisoning level can provide the diagnosis. Management requires 100% oxygen 100% Oxygen Cluster Headaches or hyperbaric oxygen Hyperbaric oxygen The therapeutic intermittent administration of oxygen in a chamber at greater than sea-level atmospheric pressures (three atmospheres). It is considered effective treatment for air and gas embolisms, smoke inhalation, acute carbon monoxide poisoning, caisson disease, clostridial gangrene, etc. The list of treatment modalities includes stroke. Decompression Sickness.

References

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