From the Toxicologist

Cannabis, E-Cigarette, and Opioid Annual Toxic Trends Reports for 2016

The 2016 Annual Toxic Trends Reports are now available. Cannabis E-Cigarettes Opioids               *Disclaimer: Reporting of exposures to the Poison Center is voluntary and not mandated by law. As such, WAPC data describes the number of calls called into the Poison Center and most likely is an underrepresentation of the true occurence of any one substance. All calls to the Washingt
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poisoned or playing

Exposure Versus Poisoning: What’s the Difference?

The Washington Poison and Drug Information Center (WAPC) is frequently asked, “What’s the difference between a poisoning and an exposure?” or “What does an exposure actually entail?” These questions and the answers to them may have a greater impact on the public and healthcare professionals than meets the eye. According to the National Poison Data System (NPDS) Coding Users’ Manual, an exposure is defined as: Actual
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Toxic Trends Report* E-Cigarettes January 22nd, 2015

The Washington Poison and Drug Information Center has seen over a 1,000% increase in call volume on e-cigarettes and liquid nicotine from 2012 to 2014. Of the total 182 calls answered by the WAPC, 109 were in children 1 – 3 years of age (60%). Children 1 – 3 years of age also comprised 82% of the total pediatric calls handled by Specialists in Poison Information. The majority of exposures (n=121) were considered unin
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Toxic Trends Report* Cannabis January 22nd, 2015

The Washington Poison and Drug Information Center is reporting a record number of marijuana exposures in Washington State since before recreational marijuana was legalized in 2012. The majority of calls occurred within the 13 – 19 year age range followed quickly by the 20 – 29 years of age group. The majority of exposures were a result of intentional abuse (n= 108) in ages 13 years and older followed by unintentional
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Toxic Trends Report* E-Cigarettes December 12th, 2014

The Washington Poison Center continues to monitor the concerning trend in E-cigarette exposures, especially in children 1 – 3 years of age. While the majority of cases have resulted in minimal toxicity (i.e. mild stomach upset), the potential still exists for children to be exposed to larger doses due to lack of industry standard safety measures such as child-resistant packaging. “Kids are more likely to inadvertentl
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Toxic Trends Report* Cannabis December 12th, 2014

The Washington Poison Center continues to follow the number of marijuana exposures occurring throughout the state of Washington. The majority of calls to the Poison Center have come in from healthcare facilities followed by home residences. “It’s extremely important that people who use marijuana or marijuana edibles keep these products out of reach of kids,” says Dr. Garrard of the Washington Poison Center. “Minor ef
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Toxic Trends Report* Cannabis November 10th, 2014

The month of October saw a large spike in marijuana exposures called into the Washington Poison Center. With only a handful of recreational marijuana stores open in the state, the majority of exposures likely result from marijuana obtained at medical marijuana dispensaries. “The medical marijuana industry is largely unregulated and not subject to the scrutiny and oversight by the Liquor Control Board that recreationa
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Toxic Trends Report* E-Cigarettes November 10th, 2014

The number of poison calls on liquid nicotine products has increased substantially at the Washington Poison Center since the first two cases in 2010. “The current trend in liquid nicotine exposures is extremely concerning, and it’s only a matter of time before a child or adult has a serious, if not fatal, outcome”, says Dr. Alexander Garrard, Clinical Managing Director at the WAPC. Pierce, King, Spokane, and Snohomis
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Image is representative of Molly tablets, not actual tablets involved in incident.

MOLLY- Public Health Alert

The Washington Poison Center is reporting an increase in the number of serious cases, including at least 1 death, associated with the drug “Molly” in recent days at rave events. Molly is marketed as a pure form of Ecstasy, but in reality, many users do not know what they’re using when they ingest Molly. The poison center urges people to contact medical help if they or someone they know is experiencing adverse effects
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Washington Poison Center Warns Parents About Halloween and Marijuana Edibles

With Halloween right around the corner, the Washington Poison Center is warning parents to be on the look-out for marijuana-edibles that may be mistaken for Halloween candy. A variety of candy-style products exist in the medical marijuana market. Marijuana-edibles can be found in a variety of shapes, sizes, and types that often resemble traditional candies and sweets in their product name and/or appearance, such as b
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