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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 33(4); 2022 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2022;33(4): 388-396.
Clinical analysis of Korean adult patients with acute pharmaceutical drug poisoning who visited the emergency department
Changyeob Lee1 , Sunpyo Kim1 , Sun Hyu Kim2 , Gyu Chong Cho3 , Ji Hwan Lee4 , Eun Jung Park5 , Duk Hee Lee6
1Department of Emergency Medicine, Chosun University College of Medicine, Gwangju, Korea
2Department of Emergency Medicine, Ulsan University Hospital, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Ulsan, Korea
3Department of Emergency Medicine, Kangdong Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
4Department of Emergency Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
5Department of Emergency Medicine, Ajou University School of Medicine, Suwon, Korea
6Department of Emergency Medicine, Ewha Womans University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
Correspondence  Sunpyo Kim ,Tel: 062-220-3285, Fax: 062-224-3501, Email: ksp93133@naver.com,
Received: September 5, 2021; Revised: October 13, 2021   Accepted: October 22, 2021.  Published online: August 31, 2022.
This study classified patients with acute pharmaceutical drug poisoning who visited the emergency department (ED) to identify clinical characteristics that could be used as the foundation for poisoning prevention programs.
Adult patients aged ≥19 years who visited one of the 23 EDs in South Korea between 2011 and 2018 with pharmaceutical drug poisoning were analyzed retrospectively by sex. The data were sourced from in-depth survey data and the ED patient surveillance system managed by the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency.
A total of 21,620 cases were analyzed. The sample had more female cases, 15,057 (69.6%); the mean age was 48.3±18.7 years for men and 44.7±17.2 years for women. The onset time was mostly between 18:00 and 24:00 hours; most patients visited the ED via 119 or private vehicles; 5,498 (83.8%) men and 13,070 (86.8%) women reported intentional poisoning; the cause being an intention to commit suicide, though most patients had no history of previous suicide attempts. The frequency of intensive care unit admission and mortality were higher in males than females. When a comparison of the type of drug by sex was carried out, it was observed that analgesic and anti-inflammatory drug poisoning were more frequent in females. On the other hand, cardiovascular drug poisoning was more frequent in males.
There were more women than men among patients with pharmaceutical drug poisoning. Severity was found to be higher in men than women. In most cases, the poisoning was intentional, and the cause of poisoning was a suicide attempt. Sedatives and antipsychotic drugs were the most commonly used drugs in both groups.
Key words: Pharmaceutical; Poisoning; Sex
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