The Poison Post ®
December 2021 Edition
Baloxavir (Xofluza) is an oral antiviral medication used to prevent or treat influenza. Although it is approved for use in otherwise healthy people, research has shown that baloxavir can reduce influenza complications in older patients and those with chronic medical conditions with very few side effects. Read more
Spackle is a general term for products used to repair small holes in drywall. It contains finely ground minerals and a liquid binder. When the liquid evaporates, it leaves behind a solid plug filling the hole. While the typical components are safe in small amounts, spackle is not meant to be swallowed. Read more
All parts of the horse chestnut tree are toxic, but the greatest concern is for horse chestnut seeds. These can be easily mistaken for edible chestnuts. Horse chestnut seed pods usually contain only one seed, while edible chestnut pods contain multiple seeds. Eating horse chestnuts can result in serious stomach upset. Read more
Taste aversive agents are extremely bitter and unpleasant tasting substances often added to potentially dangerous chemicals with the intent of preventing poisoning from accidental ingestion by humans or pets. They are also commonly used in over-the-counter products to help discourage nail-biting and thumb sucking. Read more
Chlorine dioxide and sodium chlorite are highly reactive disinfectants used to treat public water systems. They are also low-concentration ingredients in some mouthwash products. A sip is unlikely to cause anything beyond mild irritation, nausea, and short-term vomiting. Large amounts can oxidize red blood cells, making them incapable of carrying oxygen. Read more
Hawthorn has long been used in Chinese and Western medicine to treat various illnesses. The most studied use of hawthorn is for congestive heart failure (CHF). Its effectiveness for CHF and other conditions is limited, but so is its toxicity. However, it is always best to consult with your primary care provider and pharmacist before starting any herbal regimen to avoid any potential interactions with prescription or over-the-counter medications. Read more