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עמוד בית
Tue, 16.07.24

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October 2015
Ophir Lavon MD and Yedidia Bentur MD

Background: Exposure to silica gel, a common desiccant, is considered common and non-toxic although data are limited.

Objectives: To evaluate the characteristics of silica gel ingestion, and to attempt to estimate the associated health care costs.

Methods: We conducted a one year retrospective review of charts of a national poison information center to characterize ingestions of silica gel and estimate its direct cost to health care services. Cost evaluation was based on emergency department and community clinic tariffs (NIS 807/US$ 213 and NIS 253/US$ 67, respectively).

Results: A total of 546 cases were recorded, 2.1% of the annual calls to the poison information center. Most ingestions occurred in children younger than 6 years old (91.4%, 65.2% < 2 years). Median monthly exposure was 42; the peak (74) occurred in April, before the Passover holiday. Sixty calls (11%) came from health care facilities and the rest were reported by the public; 2.7% were symptomatic, mainly mild self-limited mouth and throat discomfort. The direct annual treatment cost of patients who referred themselves to health care facilities without consulting first with the Poison Center (n=60) was NIS 24,598/US$ 6507 (emergency department and community clinic visit fees). 

Conclusions: Silica gel ingestion is relatively common, occurring mainly in young children; it is rarely symptomatic but is a source of unnecessary referrals to health care facilities. The potential annual saving by preventing unnecessary referrals due to poison information center advice was estimated at NIS 375,678/US$ 99,383. The availability of poison information center services may prevent unnecessary referrals to health care facilities and thus save costs. 

 

September 2010
Y. Bentur, N. Desiatnic Obchinikov, A. Cahana, N. Kovler, A. Bloom-Krasik, O. Lavon, B. Gurevych and Y. Lurie

Background: Poisonings are a significant cause of pediatric morbidity and mortality. The Israel Poison Information Center provides clinical consultations on poisonings and drug information 24 hours a day.

Objective: To evaluate epidemiologic characteristics of pediatric poison exposures in Israel.

Methods: We reviewed computerized queries and performed a descriptive analysis of the Poison Center database pertaining to patients less than 18 years old during 2007.

Results: A total of 15,005 pediatric poison exposures were recorded, 80.3% of them occurring in children under 6 years old. Of the calls to the Poison Center, 78.6% were made by the public, 20.7% by physicians, and in 74.4% the call was within 2 hours of exposure. Most exposures occurred at home (89.3%) and were unintentional (89.5%). Among adolescents, most exposures were intentional (49.3%, 38.2% suicides), the time lapse until consultation was longer (37% > 2 hours), and more physicians (54.8%) consulted the Poison Center. Most cases were asymptomatic or mildly affected (92.3%), 54.4% in adolescents. The commonest substances involved in single poison exposure were detergents, antimicrobials, topical preparations, acetaminophen and scale removers; in adolescents the most common substances were acetaminophen, methylphenidate, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, atropine and ethanol. Moderate to severe toxicity was commonly associated with organophosphates, alkali, ethanol, Vipera palaestinae and neuroleptics. Most patients could be observed at home (66.6%), while more adolescents were referred to emergency departments (42.2% vs. 9.9%) or hospitalized (14.5% vs. 1.9%).

Conclusions: Pediatric poisonings are a significant health problem. The magnitude of the problem is greater in the young age group but more severe in adolescence, probably due to deliberate self-poisoning. Greater national efforts should be directed towards improved poison prevention, rational management of pediatric poisoning, and creating a national poisoning registry.
 

November 2008
Y. Bentur et al

Background: The Israel National Poison Information Center, Rambam Health Care Campus, provides telephone consultations on clinical toxicology as well as drug and teratogen information around the clock. The Center participates in research, teaching and regulatory activities, and also provides laboratory services.

Objectives: To analyze data on the epidemiology of poisonings and poison exposures in Israel.

Methods: We conducted computerized queries and a descriptive analysis of the medical records database of the IPIC[1] during 2007.

Results: Overall, 26,738 poison exposure cases were recorded, a 118.5% increase compared to 1995. Children under 6 years old were involved in 45% of cases; 73% of the calls were made by the public and 25.5% by physicians; 74.4% of exposures were unintentional and 9.2% intentional. Chemicals were involved in 37.9% of cases, pharmaceuticals in 44.2%, bites and stings in 4.3% and poisonous plants in 1.2%. Substances most frequently involved were analgesics, cleaning products and antimicrobials. Clinical severity was moderate/major in 3.5%. Substances most frequently involved in moderate/major exposures were insecticides, drugs of abuse and corrosives. Eight fatalities were recorded – three unintentional exposures (all chemicals) and five intentional (chemicals, medications, drugs of abuse).

Conclusions: The rates of poison exposures and poisonings in Israel have increased significantly, contributing substantially to morbidity and mortality. The IPIC database is a valuable national resource for collecting and monitoring cases of poison exposure and can be used as a real-time surveillance system. It is recommended that reporting to the IPIC become mandatory and that its activities be adequately supported by national resources.

 






[1] IPIC = Israel National Poison Information Center


Ophir Lavon, MD, Yael Lurie, MD and Yedidia Bentur, MD

Background: Scombroid fish poisoning is an acute illness caused by consumption of fish containing high concentrations of histamine. Improper handling of fish leads to bacterial contamination. Bacterial enzymes convert histidine to histamine. Symptoms develop quickly and resemble an immunoglobulin E-mediated allergic reaction. The diagnosis is often missed. Serious complications (e.g., bronchospasm, hypotension) are infrequent.

Objectives: To evaluate the prevalence and characteristics of scombroid fish poisoning in Israel as reported to the National Poison Information Center.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective poison center chart review from January 2005 to December 2007.

Results: During the study period, 21 events of scombroid poisoning involving 46 patients were recorded. Tuna was the commonest fish consumed (84.7%). Clinical manifestations developed within 20 minutes in 65.2% of the patients. The main clinical manifestations included rash (41%), flushing (37%), gastrointestinal complaints (37%) and headache (30.4%). About 25% had abnormal vital signs; two patients developed hypotension. Treatment was supportive and included mainly H1-antagonists (65.2%) and fluids (13%). Five patients were initially misdiagnosed as having an allergic reaction and were treated with corticosteroids (four patients) and epinephrine (one patient).

Conclusions: Scombroid fish poisoning should be suspected in patients with histamine-like manifestations that are temporally related to fish (mainly tuna) consumption, especially in outbreaks. Although scombroid poisoning is often self-limited and responds well to antihistamines, prolonged observation may be required as severe toxicity can supervene. Proper handling of fish and urgent notification of the Ministry of Health are mandatory in order to prevent this potentially serious public heath problem.
 

Ophir Lavon, MD, Yael Lurie, MD, Benjamin Abbou, MD, Bishara Bishara, MD, Shlomo Hanan Israelit, MD PhD and Yedidia Bentur, MD.
May 2008
J. Rovenský, K. Švík, E. Rovenská, V. Štvrtinová and M. Stančíková

Background: In both adjuvant arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis edema and inflammation appear in synovial joints. Edema or effusion reflects an imbalance in lymph dynamics. Purified micronized flavonoid fraction is mainly used in the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency. This compound improves lymphatic drainage with a signicant increase in lymphatic flow and lymphatic pulsality. It is suggested that the beneficial effect of purified micronized flavonoid fraction may be involved in the treatment of adjuvant arthritis in rats.

Objectives: To evaluate the effect of Detralex on methotrexate prophylactic treatment of adjuvant arthritis in rats.

Methods: Groups of rats with adjuvant arthritis were treated with methotrexate (0.6 mg/kg/week), Detralex (20 mg/kg/day) and their combination for 50 days from adjuvant application. Hind paw swelling, arthrogram scores, serum albumin level, serum nitrite/nitrate concentrations, whole body mineral density and X-ray scans of synovial joints were evaluated as markers of inflammation and destructive changes associated with arthritis.

Results: Long-term prophylactic treatment with low dose methotrexate significantly inhibited the markers of both inflammation and arthritis. Detralex administered alone slightly decreased both the hind paw swelling and the arthritic score. Other inflammatory and arthritic markers were not significantly influenced. However, detralex combined with methotrexate markedly potentiated the beneficial effects of methotrexate, which resulted in a more significant reduction in hind paw swelling, arthritic scores, and serum concentrations of nitrite/nitrate. Interestingly, the arthritis-induced decrease of BMD[1] in AA[2] rats was significantly lower only in the group treated with the combination of Detralex+methotrexate.

Conclusion: Detralex increased the therapeutic efficacy of methotrexate basal treatment in AA. We suggest that this may be related to the beneficial effect of Detralex on microcirculation, especially on venules and lymphatic vessels.






[1] BMD = bond mineral density

[2] AA = adjuvant arthritis


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