Evaluation of Poisoning and Drug Overdose among Cases Presented to Poison Control Centre, Ain Shams University Hospital during the Year 2015

Document Type : Original Article


1 Assistant consultant of clinical toxicology, Poison Control Center, Faculty of Medicine Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt

2 Department of Forensic medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt



 Background: Poisoning and drug overdose are important health problems in developing countries.The Poison Control Center of Ain Shams University Hospitals (PCCA) was established in 1981 as first one of its kind in the Middle East. Since then it has provided adequate services in diagnosis and treating cases of intoxication. The information released by the PCC has always been a trigger for an increasing hazard challenging the community. 
The aim of the study: To assess the prevalence of poisoning and to review the determinants, circumstances and outcome of patients with intoxication in PCCA, Egypt during the year 2015 to recognize changes in trends of poisoning to highlight threats to which the Egyptian community is exposed. 
Methods: This is a retrospective observational hospital record-based study conducted in PCCA, Egypt. In the present study, 21898 cases of poisoning including all admissions during one year (2015) were investigated.Data on demography, hospitalization, type of poison/drug, clinical and management data and outcome of patients with poisoning were collected. Data were analyzed using descriptive analysis and statistics., 
Results: This study included 21898 cases.Most cases of acute poisoning presented among 15-40 years age group (59.2%), 25.4% under 7 years old. Incidence was more common among females (54.8%) compared to males (45.2%). More than 94% of cases were toxic exposure through oral route.Most poison exposures were unintentional (49.5%).Drug poisoning constituted the majority of cases (55.1%), while non-drug poisoning was the second in incidence (44.9%), CNS drugs (9.95% ) were the most common drugs involved, chemicals (24.1%), were the commonly used poisons. Clinical severity was mild in 81.3% of cases, 13.2% was moderate and 5.5% was severe. Mortality was found to be 0.56%. Management of these cases was described. 
Conclusions: Poisoning is more common in15-40 age group followed by children younger than 7 years. CNS drugs were the most common consumed drugs over-dosage, while chemicals were the most common among poisons. There is a change in pattern of poisoning as regard decline in number of poisoning cases from kerosene and petroleum distillates, drug of abuse overdose and animal envenomation. In addition poisoning by drugs outnumbered non- drug poisoning.