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CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE BOTANICAL KIND Donna Lotzer, RPh Certified Specialist in Poison Information UW Hospital Poison Prevention & Education Center February.

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Presentation on theme: "CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE BOTANICAL KIND Donna Lotzer, RPh Certified Specialist in Poison Information UW Hospital Poison Prevention & Education Center February."— Presentation transcript:

1 CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE BOTANICAL KIND Donna Lotzer, RPh Certified Specialist in Poison Information UW Hospital Poison Prevention & Education Center February 2007

2 Monkshood Aconitum napellus Whole plant toxic, esp. roots and leaves Leaves like parsley, roots mistaken for horseradish/celery Ingestion causes local tingling, burning, numbness, thirst Vomiting, diarrhea, visual changes follow Irregular heart beats, low blood pressure lead to fatalities Fatal cases resulted 1½ to 8 hours after eating Management in intensive care if person can get there

3 Monkshood Alternate names include friar’s cap, old wife’s hood, helmet flower (easy to see why!)

4 Poison Ivy Toxicodendron radicans One of most UNpopular plants Reaction is dual with allergic rxn too Sap is culprit, found in entire plant Skin contact causes symptoms of redness, itching, blisters “progressing” over time Management: Wash affected area well Domeboro ®, rubbing alcohol, steroid cream, jewel weed (?) Protect blisters, keep clean Oral antihistamines/steroids Launder clothing separately

5 Poison Ivy

6 Poison Sumac Toxicodendron vernix

7 Water Hemlock Cicuta maculata Very highly toxic to fatal plant Mistaken for other edible plants (smells like parsnip) Symptoms occur in 15-60 min. and include vomiting, diarrhea, severe abdominal pain, dilated pupils, violent muscle spasms, seizures, breathing paralysis Person may not survive till medical care can be provided Folk antidote of salmon oil skimmed off salmonhead soup!! ROOT SECTION

8 Water Hemlock Folk names of beaver poison, death-of-man, children’s bane (HINT!)

9 Poison Hemlock Conium maculatum Highly toxic plant, common in WI marshes, ditches Mistaken for carrot, parsnip Roots and seeds esp. toxic Symptoms (1-3 hours out) include irritation, salivation, tremors, dilated pupils, muscle spasm, seizures, paralysis Death due to breathing failure Management is supportive, observe 4 hours if no symptoms. Fatal peds cases mistook ID Socrates killed with this plant in liquid prep at 70 ! Dermal contact causes a dermatitis reaction

10 Poison Hemlock Also known as kill cow, poison parsley, spotted hemlock

11 Wild Parsnip Pastinaca sativa Ditch weed, fields, RR tracks Dermal toxicity dominates No sun – irritation and rash Sun-induced burns Psoralens are culprit Mild: red, sunburn look Moderate: blisters form, area looks scalded (Day 1-3) Sweat enhances reaction Delayed: Blisters rupture, red- brown hyperpigmentation lasting up to 2 years! Burns appear streaky from sap Mistaken for poison ivy Management: Cover up skin Domeboro ®, steroid cream Protect blisters, keep clean

12 Wild Parsnip

13 Queen Anne’s Lace Daucus carota Commonly referred to as wild carrot Compare look to hemlock!! Toxic because of skin irritation from sap, combined with sunlight (like parsnip). Some parts are potentially edible so must be sure of ID. Management for dermal exposure is repeated washing and sun avoidance

14 Wild Plant Guessing Game IS THIS PLANT… Wild Carrot ? Wild Parsnip ? Poison Hemlock ? WOULD YOU EAT IT TO FIND OUT THE RESULTS? The Poison Center phone number is 1-800-222-1222 !!!!

15 Foxglove Digitalis purpurea Active principle is digitalis, used since 1700’s in medical practice “Mistaken ID” leads to ingestion and some poisonings Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, visual changes, slow irregular pulse, tremors, seizures Management includes medical observation for 12 hours, with intensive care if problems develop, using pacemaker, special drugs

16 Foxglove Common names include fairy bells, witches’ thimble, rabbit flower, lion’s mouth

17 Lily of the Valley Convallaria majalis Plant contains convallarin, convallotoxin, convallamarin (digitalis-like compounds) Multiple reasons to eat by kids/adults Symptoms like foxglove (affects the heart) Management like foxglove

18 Lily of the Valley

19 Castor Bean Plant Ricinus communis Grown as an ornamental in WI Beans common in imported jewelry Ricin – poison for spy stories and bioterrorism concerns One of most potent natural toxins (also contains ricinus) If chewed, expect burning mouth and throat, vomiting, sweats, seizures and death Management in intensive care for kidney, breathing and heart failure from ingestion or injection

20 Castor Bean Plant

21 Jimsonweed Datura stramonium Good-looking, ill-smelling weed Poisoning from honey, making tea, eating seeds or leaves Abusable by eating, smoking “Good” symptom=hallucinations “Bad” symptoms=flushed & dry skin/mouth, dilated pupils, high pulse, fever, delirium, seizures Symptoms may last 12-48 hours Management is to monitor body temp and mental status, antidote drug for severe cases

22 Jimsonweed (Close relative is Angel’s trumpet) Also called mad apple, Devil’s trumpet, stink weed

23 Lupine Lupinus spp. Member of the legume family Forms seed pods like peas Contains multiple toxins under variable growing conditions Seed pods and leaves/stems most toxic in spring Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, slowed breathing, death (rare) Management is supportive care

24 Tobacco Nicotiana tabacum Garden ornamental, grown for smoking tobacco in WI Whole plant is toxic, usually eating or skin exposures cause problems Harvest time leads to occupational exposures Symptoms include salivation, vomiting, diarrhea, pulse and blood pressure changes, seizures, breathing failure Management is washing, supportive care (ICU ?), possibly antidote drug in severe cases

25 Indian Tobacco Lobelia inflata Common names include pukeweed, gagroot, vomitroot, asthma weed Has breathing stimulant, muscle relaxant properties Native Americans smoked or chewed for lung diseases (asthma, bronchitis) Toxicity includes vomiting, seizures, breathing failure from muscle paralysis (like curare!) and death Management is supportive in intensive care May find in stop-smoking products to help with nicotine withdrawal sxs Thomas G. Barnes @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database Barnes, T.G. & S.W. Francis. 2004.

26 Indian Tobacco Cardinal Flower Found along WI river banks

27 Yew Taxus spp. Several varieties, all toxic Foliage will kill cows, horses Seeds commonly ingested by children Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, dilated pupils, slow pulse, seizures, coma and rarely death Management ranges from observation to support in an intensive care setting (rare)

28 Milkweed Asclepius spp. Food source for Monarch butterflies Selected varieties edible young Toxic part is white latex (sap) found inside entire plant Mixed toxic chemicals found Topical exposure can cause skin irritation Management is washing Folk medicines use milkweed Animals poisoned by ingestion

29 Milkweed

30 Skunk Cabbage Symplocarpus foetidus Called polecat weed because of odor Toxic chemical is calcium oxalate Symptoms are mouth pain and swelling if eaten Management is supportive care (ice cream works well) Claims for edibility, but… William S. Justice @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

31 Jack-in-the-pulpit Arisaema spp. Cultivated or wild woodland plant, attractive fruits Toxic chemical is calcium oxalate Symptoms are localized painful burning, and swelling of mouth, throat and tongue Management includes ice cream, milk or any cool liquid Seeds mistaken for pomegranate!

32 Jack-in-the-pulpit Fruiting bodies (seed head)

33 Mayapple Podophyllum peltatum Common woodland plant Ripe fruit possibly edible but stay away from the rest ! Symptoms after eating include explosive diarrhea Liver and kidney damage possible, mutagen Management is antiemetics and supportive care


35 NOT “DEADLY” plant Vine, related to tomatoes Attractive but inedible weed Several common variations, bad reputation exaggerated Symptoms potentially could include vomiting, weakness Management is generally not needed, but would be supportive care Nightshade Solanum spp. Climbing Nightshade

36 Nightshade Black Nightshade

37 Baneberry Actea rubra Toxic woodland plant with unidentified chemicals Symptoms include mouth burning and swelling, headache, abdominal pain, salivation Management is supportive care Used historically in Native American medicine

38 Baneberry Commonly known as doll’s eyes or snakeberry

39 Bloodroot Sanguinaria canadensis Member of the poppy family Named for red-orange juice in roots and stems Most toxic part is roots Multiple toxic compounds Symptoms might include vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, fainting, dilated pupils Management is supportive care

40 Stinging Nettle Urtica dioica Weed found in open areas Some sources say edible, BUT… Toxicity: painful burning skin irritation upon contact Management is supportive, with hot water to wash skin, steroid cream and oral antihistamines

41 Common cultivated woody vine on buildings or a weed in woods wrapped around trees Toxic chemical is calcium oxalate in fruit, sap Symptoms of local irritation expected on skin and in mouth Management is washing skin, ice cream, milk or any cool liquid Virginia Creeper Parthenocissus quinquefolia

42 Burdock Arctium minus Commonly mistaken for rhubarb when young Leaves are “fuzzy” and stems inedible but not toxic Burs cause mechanical injury Management not required unless for stuck burs Very popular herbal preps from root, seeds

43 Elderberry Sambucus spp. Flowers and fruits used to make wine, jelly Potential toxicity of fruit, leaves, bark, roots Symptoms potentially vomiting, diarrhea Native Americans used stems and roots as emetic and cathartic agents Management is supportive care

44 Oak acorns Quercus spp. Essential food for wild critters, not humans Contains bitter tannins Symptoms not expected Management usually not needed Foliage can be toxic to animals

45 Bracken Fern Pteridium aquilinum Reputation as edible but numerous toxic compounds including cyanide, carcinogens Linked to stomach cancer in Japan Fiddleheads most likely to be consumed by humans, animals Acute toxic effects not generally expected Recipes say to cook 20 minutes (unknown if this eliminates toxins)

46 For More Information… This presentation is on the web at –Look under educational programs Common Plants book also on my website or call 608-265-8160 is an excellent reference and used for selected pictures in this presentation Call the Wisconsin Poison Center for questions and exposures anytime!!

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