Taking a substance that is injurious to health or can cause death. Poisoning is still a major hazard to children, despite child-resistant (and sometimes adult-resistant) packaging and dose-limits per container. See also poison, Poison Control Centers.
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1. The administering of poison. 2. The state of being poisoned. SYN: intoxication (1).
- ackee p. an acute and frequently fatal vomiting disease associated with central nervous system symptoms and marked hypoglycemia, caused by eating unripe ackee fruit of Blighia spaida, a tree common in Jamaica. SYN: Jamaican vomiting sickness.
- bacterial food p. a term commonly used to refer to conditions limited to enteritis or gastroenteritis (excluding the enteric fevers and the dysenteries) caused by bacterial multiplication per se or by a soluble bacterial exotoxin.
- carbon disulfide p. acute or chronic intoxication by CS2, an industrial disease encountered among rubber workers and makers of artificial silk (rayon) by the viscose process; characterized by insomnia, listlessness, and irritability, followed by paralyses, impaired vision, peptic ulcer, and psychoses.
- carbon monoxide p. a potentially fatal acute or chronic intoxication caused by inhalation of carbon monoxide gas, which has an affinity 210 times that of oxygen for binding with hemoglobin (carboxyhemoglobinemia) and thus interferes with the transportation of oxygen and carbon dioxide by the blood.
- crotalaria p. p. of humans and animals with alkaloids of the plants Senecio (ragwort), Crotalaria (rattlebox), and Heliotropum; produces a veno-occlusive disease of the liver similar to Chiari disease. SYN: crotalism.
- cyanide p. a fairly common disease of herbivorous animals, caused by eating cyanogenic plants containing glucosides that are hydrolyzed, yielding hydrocyanic acid; some farm chemicals, such as fungicides or insecticides, may be causes of cyanide p.; hydrogen cyanide and its salts are extremely poisonous to humans, either by inhalation or by ingestion.
- Datura p. p. resulting from ingestion of plants of the genus Datura; symptoms are parasympatholytic in nature and in severe p. include central nervous system depression, circulatory failure, and respiratory depression.
- djenkol p. p. believed to result from eating excessive amounts of a bean, Pitecolobium lobatum; symptoms are pain in the renal region, dysuria, and later anuria; the djenkol bean has a high vitamin B content and is used for food despite its toxic qualities.
- ergot p. a syndrome brought on by the consumption of bread (notably rye) contaminated by the ergot fungus, Claviceps purpurea (rye smut), the source of numerous ergot alkaloids. The effects observed include peripheral vascular constriction leading to gangrene, partial paralysis with numbing, tingling, and burning in the limbs, feeble pulse, restlessness, stupor, or delirium; can prove fatal.
- food p. p. in which the active agent is contained in ingested food.
- lead p. acute or chronic intoxication by lead or any of its salts; symptoms of acute lead p. usually are those of acute gastroenteritis in adults or encephalopathy in children; chronic lead p. is manifested chiefly by anemia, constipation, colicky abdominal pain, neuropathy with paralysis with wrist-drop involving the extensor muscles of the forearm, bluish lead line of the gums, and interstitial nephritis; saturnine gout, convulsions, and coma may occur. SYN: plumbism, saturnism.
- mercury p. a disease usually caused by the ingestion or inhalation of mercury or mercury compounds, which are toxic in relation to their ability to produce mercuric ions; usually acute mercury p. is associated with ulcerations of the mouth (including loosening of teeth), stomach, and intestine and toxic changes in the renal tubules; anuria and anemia may occur; respiratory distress and pneumonia can follow inhalation; usually chronic mercury p. is a result of industrial p. and causes gastrointestinal or central nervous system manifestations including stomatitis, diarrhea, headaches, ataxia, tremor, hyperreflexia, sensorineural impairment, and emotional instability and sometimes delirium (Mad Hatter syndrome). SYN: hydrargyria, hydrargyrism, mercurialism.
- mushroom p. mycetism.
- oxygen p. SYN: oxygen toxicity.
- radiation p. SYN: radiation sickness.
- Salmonella food p. gastroenteritis caused by various strains of Salmonella that multiply freely in the gastrointestinal tract but do not produce septicemia; symptoms usually begin within 8–24 hours and include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
- scombroid p. p. from ingestion of heat-stable toxins produced by bacterial action on inadequately preserved dark-meat fish of the order Scombroidea (tuna, bonito, mackerel, albacore, skipjack); characterized by epigastric pain, nausea and vomiting, headache, thirst, difficulty in swallowing, and urticaria.
- silver p. SYN: argyria.
- Staphylococcus food p. outbreaks commonly caused by staphylococcal enterotoxin and characterized by an abrupt onset of gastroenteritis within several hours after ingestion of the food contaminated with the preformed exotoxin; vomiting is usually more severe and diarrhea less severe than in infectious forms of bacterial food p..
- systemic p. SYN: toxicosis.
- tetraethyl p. tetraethyllead.
- thallium p. a condition characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, leg pains, and severe sensorimotor polyneuropathy; about 3 weeks after p., temporary extensive loss of hair typically occurs; usually occurs after accidental ingestion of a rodenticide.
- turpentine p. p. from oil of turpentine; symptoms include hematuria, albuminuria, and coma; the urine may have an odor of violets. SYN: terebinthinism.

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poi·son·ing (poiґzən-ing) the damaging physiologic effects resulting from exposure to poison; see also intoxication.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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