Aspirin Poisoning (cont.)
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Aspirin Poisoning Treatment
The treatment of aspirin poisoning has three objectives:
Gastric lavage may be beneficial, unless contraindicated, up to 60 minutes after salicylate ingestion. Warmed (38 C or 100.4 F) isotonic sodium chloride solution may be used. The airway should be protected before gastric lavage.
Dialysis is another way to reduce the amount of salicylate in the body. The same technique that helps patients with kidney failure rid their bodies of toxins can also be used to quickly eliminate aspirin from the body of a person who has been poisoned with aspirin.
Many doctors recommend a toxicologist be consulted for aspirin overdose.
Medications for Aspirin Poisoning
Activated charcoal: To prevent more absorption, the doctor may give charcoal to absorb the salicylate from the stomach. A laxative may be given with the activated charcoal to move the mixture through the gastrointestinal system more rapidly. People who have been severely poisoned may be given repeated doses of activated charcoal.
IV fluids: Dehydration occurs early in aspirin poisoning. To correct dehydration, the doctor will start an IV to correct this imbalance. The doctor will also work to correct imbalances in the body's blood chemistries.
Alkaline diuresis: This is a way to reduce the amount of salicylate in the body. Alkaline diuresis is the process of giving a person who has been poisoned compounds that alter the chemistry of the blood and urine in a way that allows the kidneys to remove more salicylate. Specifically, sodium bicarbonate is given via IV to make the blood and urine less acidic (more alkaline), which encourages the kidneys to capture more salicylate that can leave the body through the urine. Sometimes, other compounds, such as potassium, also have to be given to help with this process and help prevent hypokalemia.
Aspirin Poisoning Other Therapy
The emergency physician may have to perform other procedures or give other medications as supportive care in the case of dangerous aspirin overdose. These actions may include the following:
Last Reviewed 11/20/2017
Hanan Al Hammadi, MD
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