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Toxicology surveillance system of the Spanish Society of Paediatric Emergencies: first-year analysis

Azkunaga, Beatriz; Mintegi, Santiago; Bizkarra, Irati; Fernández, JavierThe Intoxications Working Group of the Spanish Society of Pediatric Emergencies

European Journal of Emergency Medicine: October 2011 - Volume 18 - Issue 5 - p 285–287
doi: 10.1097/MEJ.0b013e3283462504

We aim to describe the characteristics and the management of the paediatric poisonings registered in the Toxicology Surveillance System created by the Intoxications Working Group of the Spanish Society of Paediatric Emergencies. We reviewed 130 episodes registered during 1 year. The main involved substances were drugs (73, 56.2%), household products (24,18.5%) and ethanol (16, 12.3%). Most common mechanisms were accidental poisonings at home in children of less than 5 years (91, 70%; principally, paracetamol or anticatharrals) and patients of 12–18 years (24.6%), with recreational alcohol consumption or suicide attempt. Approximately 10% received prehospital treatment and 56.9% received treatment in the paediatric emergency department (PED), which mainly activated charcoal. Approximately 50% were managed as outpatients, and all did well. Although intoxications are infrequent in PED and the short-term prognosis is good, the consumption of healthcare resources is high.

Department of Pediatric Emergency, Cruces Hospital, Bilbao, Bizkaia, Spain

Correspondence to Dr Beatriz Azkunaga Santibañez, MD, Department of Paediatric Emergency, Cruces Hospital, Barakaldo, Bizkaia 48093, Spain Tel: +34 94 6006463; fax: +34 94 6006076; e-mail:

Received October 17, 2010

Accepted February 24, 2011

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.