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In the context of biology, poisons are substances that cause injury, illness, or death to organisms, usually by chemical reaction or other activity on the molecular scale. Some poisons are also toxins, usually referring to naturally produced substances that kill rapidly in small quantities, such as the bacterial proteins that cause tetanus and botulism.
Last Updated -12th December 2005
For any poisoning, call your doctor, emergency department or poison control center immediately.
Syrup of Ipecac is a drug used to induce vomiting but should not be used in the following situations as the vomiting caused by Ipecac is very violent:
- If a woman is more than 5 months pregnant.
- If the victim has a history of heart disease.
- If the child is younger than 1 year of age.
- If the victim might choke on the vomited material or inhale it into the lungs (this would be common is victims over 65 or someone who is drunk, drowsy or lethargic).
Making someone vomit, though, can be harmful. Sometimes water should be given to dilute the poison with inducing vomiting. The following are guidelines as to when or when not to induce vomiting:
- Dishwashing liquid
- Plant food
- Aspirin and other medications
- Finernail polish remover
- Rat poison
Do Not Induce Vomiting
- Dishwasher detergent
- Oven cleaner
- Oil-based paints
- Furniture polish
- Cleaning solutions
- AntifreezeKeep Ipecac on hand and replace it every 5 years if you haven't used it. It will remain effective for 1 year after it has been opened.
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