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Medicina Legal de Costa Rica

On-line version ISSN 2215-5287Print version ISSN 1409-0015


ARIAS VILLALOBOS, Luis Fernando; PELAEZ ECHAVARRIA, Daniela  and  MENDEZ SOLIS, Gloriana. Acute management of drug intoxication. Med. leg. Costa Rica [online]. 2021, vol.38, n.1, pp.101-118. ISSN 2215-5287.

Poisoning or drug overdose is a major source of morbidity, mortality and health expenditure worldwide, especially in adults under 35, where it is the leading cause of non-traumatic cardiac arrest, being more common drugs involved, analgesics, antidepressants, opioids, however, this may vary. It is important to make a quick approach, based on questioning, information from any witness and evidence, and the patient’s clinic. Cardiac arrest due to toxicity is managed according to current Basic and Advanced life support standards, following the principles of A, B, C, D, E. Clinical manifestations and clinical approach can vary considerably depending on the substance involved. Laboratory tests are almost never available in a time frame that supports early resuscitation decisions, yet it is advisable to perform them. In general, the toxic effects can be reduced if the absorption of the drugs is limited or their elimination increased. In addition, you can block unwanted pharmacological effects with so-called antidotes. The use of activated charcoal, specific antidotes, and extracorporeal treatments are also covered in this review.

Keywords : Toxicologic; advanced cardiac life support; acute poisoning; overdose; antidote..

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