Delayed death following paraquat poisoning: three case reports and a literature review
Paraquat (PQ) poisoning is principally reported in developing countries. However, most fatalities occur elsewhere due to the induction of multi-organ failure. PQ poisoning can hardly be managed by clinical practice, and no specific antidote has come into existence yet. Here three cases, including 17-, 20-, and 23-year-old men, who were poisoned with PQ, have been reported. Furthermore, the literature regarding biological mechanisms, clinical manifestation, and treatment of PQ-induced toxicity was reviewed. Patients who, either intentionally or accidentally, ingested PQ earlier were initially found to be stable at the emergency department (ED). Therefore, they were discharged from the hospital under a follow-up. However, after several days, the patients were referred to the hospital for the second time and despite cardiovascular resuscitation (CPR) efforts, they suddenly expired. The delayed death following exposure to PQ was reported for inducing gradual progressive pulmonary fibrosis, metabolic acidosis, neurotoxicity, renal failure, and liver injury in poisoned patients. Therefore, PQ-intoxicated patients should be supervised for up to several weeks, and kept in the hospital for a longer period of time. Clinical manifestations and laboratory findings are beneficial markers that act as useful predictors of PQ poisoning.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Recent Review Articles