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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 13(1); 2002 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2002;13(1): 67-72.
Initial Laboratory Parameters Affecting Survival Rate in Patients Poisoned with Paraquat
Kyoung Woon Jeoung, Hyun Chang Kim, Byeong Jo Chun, Han Deok Yoon, Tag Heo, Yong Il Min
Department of Emergency Medicine, School of Medicine, Chonnam National University, Gwangju, Korea. minyi@chonnam.ac.kr
Paraquat (1,1-dimethyl-4,4'-bipyridylium chloride) is widely a used non- selective herbicide. In spite of efforts to improve the outcome in patients poisoned with paraquat, the mortality rates still remains high. The purpose of this study is to identify initial stat laboratory parameters which can affect the survival rate of these patients.
A retrospective analysis by chart review was done on 67 patients who had ingested paraquat and who had presented to the Emergency Medical Center of Chonnam University Hospital from June 1997 to July 2001.
The results were as follows: 1) Survivors were significantly younger than the nonsurvivors (38 years vs 44 years, p=0.03). The volume of paraquat ingested by survivors was significantly smaller than that ingested by the deceased (1 mouthful vs 3 mouthfuls, p<0.001). 2) The WBC count and the levels of serum AST, BUN and serum creatinine in the deceased were significantly higher than those in the survivors. The levels of serum potassium and bicarbonate, arterial pH, and base excess in survivors were significantly higher than those in the deceased. 3) A multivariate analysis revealed that serum creatinine, serum potassium, and arterial base excess were associated with the fatality rate.
Initial stat laboratory parameters including arterial blood gas analysis, renal function test, and serum electrolytes could be used to predict the outcome of patients poisoned with paraquat. However, the development of readily applicable and reliable indices predicting outcome is desired for the future.
Key words: Paraquat, Initial laboratory parameters, Survival rate
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