Overdose with aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid)
Aspirin is widely known for its ability to lower fever and thin the blood. It is one of the main components of first-aid kits. For many patients, this drug helps to improve their health.
But can acetylsalicylic acid be dangerous? Moreover, is it possible to poison aspirin? If this happens, then how to see intoxication, what help would you need? How to treat an overdose, are there any consequences? How does acetylsalicylic acid on the body? There are many questions, you need to deal with them.
The effect of aspirin on the body
Aspirin has many analogues, but they are all made on the basis of acetylsalicylic acid. This drug belongs to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and antiplatelet agents. It relieves pain, inflammation, has antipyretic effect. By reducing platelet aggregation, the drug prevents the formation of blood clots.
Aspirin is completely absorbed in the digestive tract. Its breakdown occurs in the liver, and excretion through the kidneys. Aspirin is used for acute colds, accompanied by fever, migraine, pain from inflammation, in order to prevent cardiovascular complications in people with atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, cerebral circulation and other cardiovascular diseases.
Causes of aspirin poisoning
As with any high-dose drug, aspirin can be poison. The causes of aspirin overdose are as follows.
- Treatment without a doctor's prescription, when the reception is carried out in the wrong dose or without taking into account contraindications.
- Intentional excess of therapeutic dosage (it happens very rarely).
- With the right reception in the case of significant violations of the liver and (or) kidneys.
- When a child finds a package with medicine.
Aspirin poisoning is acute and chronic.
A single dose of a large dose over two days leads to the development of acute intoxication. The concentration of acetylsalicylic acid in the blood will exceed 300 µg / L.
If the maximum daily dose has been exceeded for a long time, chronic poisoning develops. The content of the drug in the blood in this case, 150-300 mg / l.
The maximum daily medication is 3 grams. For aspirin poisoning to occur, you need to drink 100 mg per 1 kg of body weight per day. Lethal dose of 500 mg / kg or more per day.
Symptoms of chronic aspirin overdose
Chronic intoxication is difficult to diagnose. Relatives can usually tell exactly when a package from a newly purchased drug is found empty. The most reliable diagnostic method is the determination of acetylsalicylic acid in the blood. Most often chronic intoxication occurs in the elderly.
In chronic aspirin overdose, the symptoms will be as follows:
- noise in ears;
- digestive disorders;
- stomach ache;
- hearing loss;
- nausea, vomiting;
- anemia, a decrease in the level of leukocytes and blood platelets;
- stupor, loss of consciousness.
Chronic intoxication is dangerous by provoking bleeding, the development of drug-induced bronchial asthma. Prolonged overdose may exacerbate heart failure.
Symptoms of acute aspirin poisoning
Acute poisoning has 3 degrees of severity. With mild - the symptoms will be the same as with chronic intoxication, only consciousness in this case will not be disturbed.
An overdose of moderate severity is manifested by increased and difficult breathing, a cough with mucous sputum appears, and body temperature begins to rise. Toxic effects are directed to the nervous system, lungs, kidneys, liver, blood.
A severe overdose of acetylsalicylic acid causes respiratory failure in patients with a transition to pulmonary edema. It is accompanied by an even greater increase in respiration, coughing, pallor and subsequent blueing. When foam appears at the mouth, at this stage of pulmonary edema, rarely anyone can be saved.
Body temperature reaches high rates. Blood pressure gradually decreases, the pulse is increased, patients feel interruptions in the work of the heart. Before the loss of consciousness, which develops gradually, there is a small period of arousal. First appear drowsiness, stupor. Then the victim falls into a coma. Seizures develop.
When kidney damage decreases urination. A life threatening electrolyte imbalance develops. Sodium content in plasma increases, and potassium decreases.
For poisoning is characterized by the development of toxic encephalopathy (a disease of the brain). In mild cases, it manifests itself in general weakness, scattered attention, irritability, poor sleep, slowness, apathy, anxiety. With further progression of consciousness is disturbed.
Aspirin overdose is fatal from acute hepatic or renal failure, pulmonary edema, paralysis of the brain centers that control breathing and cardiac activity.
First aid and further treatment
Having noticed signs of an aspirin overdose, what can be done? If there is a suspicion of poisoning, you should immediately consult a doctor. While the ambulance is going to the patient, try to induce vomiting, and then give activated charcoal. In the future, the reception of sorbents continues for several more days. In severe aspirin poisoning, the victim should be taken to hospital as soon as possible.
In the clinic, the stomach is washed, forced diuresis is performed, which implies intravenous-drip administration of solutions, and then diuretic preparations. The treatment also includes correction of the ion and water balance of the blood. If necessary, cardiac agents are administered, symptomatic treatment is carried out. Hemodialysis is also prescribed if severe acetylsalicylic acid poisoning occurs.
Consequences of aspirin overdose
The recovery of an organism largely depends on the severity of the poisoning, the type of its course, the timeliness of medical care, the previous state of the organism. In the acute course of light and moderate poisoning can go without a trace. The likelihood of developing multiple organ failure is very low. For severe or chronic overdose of aspirin, the consequences can be significant. There is a high risk of toxic encephalopathy, the development of kidney, liver failure, bronchial asthma, peptic ulcer.
So, we managed to find out that the uncontrolled intake of aspirin creates the danger of poisoning. Penetrating into all organs, it can cause their multiple insufficiency, which is dangerous not only for health, but also for life. Symptoms of poisoning, especially chronic, are not specific. Therefore, if chronic intoxication develops in an elderly person, the clinical manifestations of poisoning can be mistaken for signs of chronic diseases and not pay enough attention to them. After all, a lot of elderly people who do not take aspirin suffer from tinnitus, headaches, hearing loss, nausea. First aid for intoxication has no features and is based on the general principles of treatment of poisoning. There is no specific antidote for aspirin. Therefore, to avoid such situations, all medicines should be taken only as prescribed by a doctor!