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Hsieh Y.-W.,Center for Traditional Chinese Medicine | Lin J.-L.,Chang Gung Memorial Hospital | Lin J.-L.,Chang Gung University | Lee S.-Y.,Chang Gung Memorial Hospital | And 12 more authors.
Pediatric Emergency Care | Year: 2013

OBJECTIVE: This observational study examined the outcome of Taiwanese pediatric patients with paraquat poisoning and compared these data with the published data on paraquat poisonings from other international poisoning centers. METHODS: We performed a retrospective study on children with acute paraquat poisoning that were admitted to the Chang Gung Memorial Hospital during a period of 10 years (2000-2010). Of the 193 paraquat poisoning patients, only 6 were children. RESULTS: The mean age was 8.85 ± 5.55 (1-15.6) years. Younger patients had accidentally swallowed paraquat, whereas older patients had intentionally ingested paraquat. Most patients were referred within a relatively short period (0.5-2.0 hours). Paraquat poisoning was associated with high morbidity and often resulted in severe complications, including acute respiratory distress syndrome and multiple-organ failure. The complications included shock (50.0%), hypoxemia (33.3%), respiratory failure (33.3%), nausea/vomiting (16.7%), abdominal pain (33.3%), hepatitis (66.7%), gastrointestinal tract bleeding (33.3%), acute renal failure (33.3%), and seizures (16.7%). Patients were treated aggressively with a standard detoxification protocol consisting of gastric lavage, active charcoal, charcoal hemoperfusion, and cyclophosphamide and steroid pulse therapies. Secondary bacterial infections were common after hospitalization and included sepsis (33.3%), pneumonia (33.3%), and urinary tract infection (50.0%). In the end, 2 patients (33.3%) died from multiple-organ failure, despite intensive resuscitation. CONCLUSIONS: Our data (mortality rate, 33.3%) are comparable to the data of other published reports from other international poison centers. Evidently, a prompt diagnosis of paraquat poisoning and an immediate institution of a detoxification protocol is a prerequisite for a favorable outcome.© Copyright 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

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