INTRODUCTION: Epidemiology describing poisoned patients treated at Copenhagen University Hospital, Bispebjerg has not been published since 1993. We wanted to describe the pattern of intoxications.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A retrospective study of poisoned patients admitted to the emergency ward during 2001. A computer search of patients discharged with codes T36.0-T65.9 was supplemented by a hand search of the daily admittance lists.
RESULTS: 355 patients with confirmed poisonings were found. 97% were poisoned by medications, alcohol (ethanol) or drugs of abuse. Only 3% were poisoned by other agents such as CO. 55% of poisonings were intentional, where paracetamol and benzodiazepines were the preferred agents. Sedative-hypnotics, alcohol, opioids, and drugs of abuse dominated the unintentional overdoses. Patients poisoned by paracetamol were younger and female, with an overrepresentation of young women of foreign origin. Activated charcoal was the preferred method of gastric decontamination. In 52% of the cases various discrepancies between discharge codes and actual poisonings were found. There were 5 deaths, 2 of which were from mixed overdoses with benzodiazepines involving the administration of flumazenil. The 355 cases represented 6% of all patients admitted to the department.
CONCLUSION: Paracetamol, sedative-hypnotics and alcohol were the most common poisoning agents. Mortality was 1%. A general problem of discharge coding was found, which might implicate unreliability in statistics in this field.
|Bidragets oversatte titel||A study of 355 consecutive acute poisoning cases admitted to an emergency ward at Copenhagen University Hospital, Bispebjerg in 2001|
|Tidsskrift||Ugeskrift for læger [online]|
|Status||Udgivet - 7 maj 2007|
- Acute Disease
- Alcoholic Intoxication
- Analgesics, Non-Narcotic
- Drug Overdose
- Hypnotics and Sedatives
- Middle Aged
- Patient Admission
- Retrospective Studies