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Revista Cubana de Plantas Medicinales

On-line version ISSN 1028-4796


MACIAS PEACOK, Beatriz; SUAREZ CRESPO, Maykel Fernando; BERENGUER RIVAS, Clara Azalea  and  PEREZ JACKSON, Liliana. Cases of poisoning caused by toxic plants seen at a toxicological information service. Rev Cubana Plant Med [online]. 2009, vol.14, n.2. ISSN 1028-4796.

INTRODUCTION: in many countries, the accidental or intentional exposure to toxic substances is the frequent cause of acute and chronic pathological processes that represent the second cause of death after the infectious illnesses. In statistical reports, poisoning from pscyho drugs and herbicides prevail, but there are others as those caused by vegetable substances that are also commonly treated in the emergency services. OBJECTIVES: to ascertain the incidence and mortality of poisoning from plants reported in the Pharmacological and Toxicological Consultancy Service of TOXIMED. METHODS: The record of poisoned patients seen at this service from 1998 to December 2007 was used; the universe of patients was 290. Each register provided data like sex, clinical manifestations, circumstances around the poisoning, name of the toxic plant, place of origin of the poisoned person and the patient's final evolution. RESULTS: twenty four consultation services for poisoned patients caused by toxic plants were recorded. (8,3 %). Male patients (75 %) and intentional poisoning for toxic mania (54 %) prevailed; being (Datura stramonium L.) the most used plant. The highest percent of poisoned persons was found in Santiago de Cuba province (75 %) where the patients from Santiago de Cuba municipality (38,9 %) predominated. There were 4 deaths (16,7 %). CONCLUSIONS: the population of the Eastern region of the country traditionally uses some plants that have been barely studied or not studied at all from the toxicological viewpoint, so it is necessary to continue studying these plants, and to disseminate information in order to reduce morbidity and mortality from toxic vegetables.

Keywords : toxic plants; Datura stramonium.

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