How to distinguish toxicosis from poisoning

интоксикация Before you give an unambiguous answer to the question of poisoning or toxicosis make you unwell, let's try to figure out what is toxicosis and poisoning, what causes and symptoms usually accompany them.

Toxicosis or intoxication is a painful condition of the body caused by the action of endogenous substances (chemical elements that make up the body) harmful to it, as well as toxins of exogenous nature (that is, those that enter the body from outside).

The state of toxicosis can be caused by changes in the body of a pregnant woman, but it is worth noting that not only pregnancy can be its cause.

Food poisoning is a deterioration of the state, due to eating foods that are infected with certain types of viruses, bacteria, or parasites, toxins. Symptoms of food poisoning are usually accompanied by nausea, vomiting, pain in the abdomen, diarrhea, urine acquires a dark yellow tint, dry mucous (most often in the mouth).

Types of toxicosis and their differences from poisoning

There are several types of toxicosis, the symptoms of which we will consider below. And also find out what is their difference from poisoning.

Toxicosis with acute adrenal insufficiency

инфекция головного мозга This type of toxicosis is usually caused by the main causative agent of meningococcal infection - a disease that occurs as an infectious inflammation of the membranes of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) or inflammation of the mucous membranes (nasopharyngitis).


  • elevated body temperature, sometimes reaching 40 degrees Celsius;
  • pronounced pale skin tone;
  • the appearance of "stellar rash" - against the background of pale skin bright areas of red and cherry rash, which resembles scattered stars;
  • feeling of sluggishness, fatigue and retardation;
  • a breathing disorder - frequent, arrhythmic, superficial;
  • possible bloody vomiting.

Differences from food poisoning

  • poisoning is not accompanied by the appearance of red spots on the skin of a person;
  • Usually, food poisoning does not cause a rash;
  • food poisoning does not cause such a high temperature rise;

Toxicosis with liver failure

печеночная недостаточность Usually caused by a viral disease in children under three years old. At the initial stage it proceeds, as ORVI or intestinal infection.


  • drowsiness;
  • convulsions;
  • profuse vomiting;
  • high body temperature;
  • turbidity of consciousness;
  • breathing becomes quick and deep;
  • enlarged, painful liver.

Difference of such toxicosis is densification, enlargement of the liver. Toxicosis with liver failure can lead to coma.

Differences from food poisoning

  • if vomiting is accompanied by the appearance of seizures, then you are dealing with a toxicosis;
  • toxicosis in the first stages proceeds approximately the same way as ARVI;
  • although there is no jaundice, but the liver is enlarged dense.

Toxicosis with acute renal insufficiency

острая почечная недостаточность Usually accompanied by anemia (lack of iron in the blood) or thrombocytopenia (a decrease in the number of platelets, causing deterioration of coagulability and healing of wounds);

The causes of toxicosis most often are:

  • respiratory viral infections;
  • gastrointestinal infections;
  • vaccination.


  • the appearance of swelling in the nose, eyes and lips;
  • abdominal pain;
  • vomiting;
  • lowering, and then a gradual increase in blood pressure;
  • the appearance of dyspnea and many others.

This kind of toxicosis leads to violations in the cardiovascular system. Most often it can be confused with food poisoning. Can cause normochromic anemia, thrombocytopenia (decrease in the number of platelets).

Differences from food poisoning

  • food poisoning can cause jaundiced skin tone in very rare cases, most often this symptom is a sign of toxicosis of this type;
  • when food poisoning does not occur nosebleeds, which, in turn, often occurs in this type of toxicosis.

Toxicosis in pregnancy

токсикоз и беременность Most often occurs in the first trimester of pregnancy. When you appear in the last months of pregnancy, it becomes more dangerous than in the early stages. It is divided into three different degrees:

  1. The first degree. Symptoms: rare nausea (not more often 5 times a day), most often provoked by sharp smells of food products.
  2. The second degree. Symptoms: The number of vomiting, ending with vomiting, increases to 10-15 times a day. Sharp weight loss (sometimes up to three kilograms) and an increase in heart rate.
  3. Third degree. Symptoms: vomiting occurs up to 20-25 times a day, which can provoke any movement. A high rate of pulse, body temperature rises to about 37 degrees Celsius.

Differences in toxicosis during pregnancy from food poisoning

  • most often nausea and vomiting appear only in the morning;
  • the main factor that causes malaise and nausea is intolerance of odors;
  • with toxicosis in pregnancy, there is no diarrhea;
  • absence of cramps and pain in the abdomen.
Help with toxicosis in pregnant women

To relieve the state of health in toxicosis, pregnant women are recommended rest and peace. It helps to cope with nausea mint tea with a slice of lemon. It is recommended that you start your day with it. During toxemia it is useful to have an orange or a lemon. A couple of bits of these citrus fruits will help you get rid of the feeling of nausea. In order not to provoke attacks of nausea and vomiting, it is recommended to abandon fatty, salty and fried foods. Let your menu include more vegetables and fruits. And cooking is best done with a minimum of salt.

Toxico-septic state

токсико-септическое состояние It is caused by ingestion of staphylococcus a person.


  • pallor;
  • enlarged lymph nodes;
  • the appearance of dyspnea;
  • dehydration;
  • the emergence of a comparative state (the lack of a person's reaction to the environment).

It can lead to pleurisy, hypoxia, lack of calcium and dehydration, which, in turn, can cause dystrophy.

Differences from food poisoning

  • if your skin has acquired a shade of earthy-grayish - this is an indication that you have toxicosis. When food poisoning usually there is a slight pallor of the skin;
  • palpate your lymph nodes, if they are enlarged, then this is a toxicosis.

How to distinguish toxicosis from poisoning in general

отравление Summing up, I want to draw my attention to how to distinguish toxicosis and poisoning in general .

First of all, it should be remembered that with toxicosis there is no diarrhea. This is a very rare phenomenon. Do not rush to start treatment for food poisoning, if you do not feel cramps and pain in the abdomen, and vomiting you cause a sharp smell or even a kind of food. These are the main signs of toxicosis, not food poisoning.

However, one should not forget that toxicosis in acute liver failure can also cause abdominal cramps, but you can safely repel the suspicion of food poisoning if you have swelling of parts of the face, pressure jumps, shortness of breath, and many other symptoms described above.

And remember, if you know the enemy in person, then there is no chance that you will be able to mix it up with someone. Consult specialists about your ailments, they will help you to understand professionally what exactly is happening with your body.