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Admissions to the Cardiff Poisons Unit involving paracetamol poisoning (1989-2002)

Ghandforoush-Sattari, M., Mashayekhi, S., Thompson, John Paul and Routledge, Philip Alexander 2007. Admissions to the Cardiff Poisons Unit involving paracetamol poisoning (1989-2002). Toxicology Letters 172 (S) , S229. 10.1016/j.toxlet.2007.05.577

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Paracetamol is the commonest agent taken in overdose in the UK. Paracetamol overdose is also the most common cause of fulminant liver failure in the UK and around 15–20 patients a year undergo liver transplantation after paracetamol overdose. In the present study, we studied the trends in paracetamol poisoning over more than a decade in Cardiff to compare these patterns with trends in the other substances taken in overdose. All data concerning patients aged 14 and over in both sexes referred to the Cardiff Poisons Treatment Unit at Llandough Hospital between 1989 and 2002 were studied to compare the substances used for overdose due to their sex, age and outcome after paracetamol poisoning. The Chi-squared test for trend was used. During the 14-year study period (1989–2002), there were 18,834 admissions to the hospital involving either pure paracetamol or in combination with other drugs (37.0%, N = 6975), and the proportion of admissions with paracetamol poisoning increased from 35.9% in 1989 to 44.4% (χ2 for trend = 3.9, P < 0.05) in 2002. Thus, paracetamol poisoning remains a major public health problem in the UK. In this study, we suggested that paracetamol pack-size legislation in the UK in September 1998 has not achieved as large as an overdose rate reduction as might have been expected.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Pharmacy
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0378-4274
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2022 07:42

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