Pattern of acute poisonings in children below 15 years - A study from Mangalore, South India

Pradhum Ram, Tanuj Kanchan, B. Unnikrishnan

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16 Citations (Scopus)


Acute poisoning in children is a problem ubiquitous in distribution and is an important paediatric emergency. The present research was aimed to study the pattern and outcome of childhood poisoning under the age of 15 years at a tertiary care centre in South India to characterize the problem of acute paediatric poisoning among the children in different age group in the region. Medical records of all poisoning patients admitted during 2010 and 2011 were reviewed, and the information relating to the sociodemographic and clinical profile of the patients was recorded. Acute poisoning was reported in 81 children aged below 15 years during the study period. 50.6% were boys (n = 41) and 49.4% girls (n = 40). The mean age of the study sample was 6.8 years. Mean age was observed to be higher in females than males. The maximum number of cases were observed in the below 5 years age group (n = 45). A male predominance was evident in the below 5 years age group, while a female predominance in the age group between 10 and 15 years. Kerosene (n = 23, 28.4%) and organophosphate compounds (n = 16, 19.8%) were the most common agents responsible for poisoning in children. The majority of the poisoning cases were reported to the hospital within 12 h of the incident (n = 65, 83.3%). The mortality in paediatric poisoning was observed to be 7.4%. The majority of the children (n = 68, 84.0%) recovered, while seven patients had left the hospital against medical advice (8.6%). The study reports agrochemicals and hydrocarbons to be the most commonly implicated agents in paediatric poisoning. The cause of paediatric poisonings varies in different age groups and hence, preventive strategies should be planned accordingly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-29
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law
  • Medicine(all)


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