Poisoning-3rd leading cause of accidental death. How???

I just looked at a statistic saying that poisoning is the third leading cause of accidental death.

While I assume most of these deaths occured in children, something tells me that accidental poisoning has occured in adults too. How on earth can an adult accidently poison themselves. And no, this did not include poisoning by gases.

Lots of people die from taking too much Tylenol and then getting their drink on. More common than you’d think.

ETA - are overdoses considered poisoning? How about shooting up contaminated or tainted drugs?

Alcoholics and drug addicts sometimes get desperate and try out the cleaning fluids. Good way to wake up dead there.

I’ve also noticed that a surprising number of people keep their pest control potions in a kitchen cabinet. (Me included, think I’ll change that.)

Yes, it seems like OD would have to be included for the statistic to make sense. What about food poisoning?

Is the statistic worldwide, or based on a particular country? If it’s worldwide, I guess there would be some contamination/poisoning due to unregulated or under-regulated industrial or agricultural practices.

In the U.S. only. Food poisoning? Good question to ask, it did say solids and liquids.

Did it include gases? CO-poisoning is pretty common, I think, even more if you include the people who asfixiated during a fire.

Both CO and cyanide are anesthetic, and cyanide can be found in bitter almonds. I’ve walked in front of a bakery display where all the cakes had a sprinkling of chopped-up almonds and the smell of cyanide made me gag and nauseous (the first symptoms of CN poisoning), whereas the attendants looked fresh as roshes on the bush (either they weren’t being affected, or they were already anesthesized, with my money on the second option). Those cakes could have been a source of food poisoning (I told the supermarket’s customer service, but the word of a 19yo college student didn’t carry any weight with them).

I think it is more than likely that you are extremely sensitive to the smell of cyanide. Having worked around mildly acidic cyanide plating baths, I doubt there was enough cyanide in an almond to cause poisoning. I’ve never smelled cyanide that strong from an almond.

ETA: Actually, in my experience, there isn’t a whole lot of time to feel nauseous from cyanide gas. It will literally black you out while you are standing there. Honestly, I’m still not quite sure what I did wrong and it was over in an instant, but dam that was weird.

I’m guessing the top 2 leading causes are very broad categories, like “injury”? If so, the actual number of cases may be pretty small.

The CDC says that “unintentional poisoning” includes accidental overdoses on drugs or chemicals used for recreational purposes, as well as accidental overdoses in children. Unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning would also fall under this category. Cite. (Other poisonings are classified as intentional or undetermined.)

I would agree with ZSOPHIA. Acetmenophen taken too regularly,or in too large a dose or mixed with ETOH or other Tylenol containing products (percocet) can be detrimental toi your liver!

Nave, domestic almonds grown for food are sweet almonds, not bitter almonds. Was this just a small bakery? I would have been tempted to buy a little, seal it, and have it tested to see if they were using bitter almonds.

But why would they go to the trouble?

Anyway, sweet almonds won’t hurt you.

You would be surprised at the toxins adults willing ingest in near-lethal quantities.



I’ll take a guess that the 2 leaders are vehicular and firearms.

Indeed. Just last week I surprised a patient as I turned a corner on a hospital ward. She unscrewed the top of a pump-top alcohol-based disinfectant, tilted her head back, chugged, and screwed the top back on. I almost vomited just by seeing it (the disinfectant is foamy, perfumed, and a sick pink color). That being said, her motion was a thing of beauty. In one fluid movement, she did it all. Smooooth. Practice makes perfect, I guess.

you rummage for food under the sink? EEw …

[the cupboard under a sink being the traditional repository for cleaning supplies and industrial chemicals…]

I would also add people who forage for mushrooms because they are wild and natural [and a seriously BAD idea to eat foraged shrooms unless you are amazingly accurate in identifying fungi. There are too many poison ones that look just like edible ones] misidentifying or taking the wrong meds in combination [statins and grapefruit spring to mind, and you can get a wicked case of thrush from IIRC tetracycline and milk products, so there are probably more really bad food/drug interactions I don’t know about] and people who self medicate with herbals [many herbals can interact badly with medications]

We need a barf smilie.

That said, a couple of years ago we all came in to work on monday, and there was a corporate info pack on all our desks which included a bottle of hand sanitiser with some info on avoiding the (pre swine/avian) 'flu. Everyone thought that this was pretty good stuff but binned the corporate info immediately.
The next day, all the sanitiser was gone, too. Apparently supplying high alcohol content hand gel to staff was a health and safety risk. Some people did not know that it was for external use/hands only. :smack:


Are you in the U.S.? Bitter almonds aren’t even allowed in the U.S. Sweet almonds don’t have any smell. That would be almond flavoring. The reason the attendants looked fresh as roses on the bush was probably because there was no cyanide.