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Poisonings and overdoses in the intensive care unit: General and specific management issues

Zimmerman, Janice L. MD, FCCM

doi: 10.1097/01.CCM.0000100123.50896.F0
Concise Definitive Review

Objective To provide current information on general and specific interventions for overdoses likely to require intensive care.

Design Review of literature relevant to selected interventions for general management of overdoses and specific poisons.

Results The benefit of interventions to decrease absorption or enhance elimination of toxins is limited to a relatively small number of specific agents. Antidotes and certain interventions may be helpful in preventing or treating toxicity in specific poisonings when used appropriately. Intensive supportive care is also necessary to achieve good outcomes.

Conclusion Knowledge of the indications and limitations of current interventions for poisonings and overdoses is important for care of the critically ill poisoned patient.

From the Department of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX.

© 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.