Clinical Poisonings Imposed by the COVID-19 Pandemic
International Journal of Medical Toxicology and Forensic Medicine,
Vol. 11 No. 1 (2021),
23 January 2021
Background: Along with the COVID-19 pandemic, a new problem has appeared in the healthcare facilities: toxicities and poisonings caused by medications and home remedies, by which people have been trying to protect themselves from acquiring the virus. The authors of this paper aim to notify the global scientific society of several substances and medications that either have led to poisonings thus far or have the potential for an outbreak.
Methods: Medical English literature reporting cases of poisonings during this pandemic between January and December 2020. Substances and drugs that could be a potential concern to public health are also reviewed.
Results: Alcohols and chemical substances have been the main causes of poisonings during this pandemic. Opioids, household products and herbal remedies were partly to blame. Global spread of incorrect information related to the COVID-19 prevention and treatment is a major risk to human lives, particularly in this difficult situation where healthcare systems are overwhelms with high rate of COVID-19 morbidity and mortality.
Conclusion: As additional waves of the coronaviruses may hit countries in the upcoming winter, confinements may as well continue. Therefore, emergency physicians must be prepared for possible outbreaks of poisonings and be able to predict any unusual pattern of toxicities.
How to Cite
SARS-CoV-2 with masks and other ”Low-tech” interventions.
JAMA. 2020; 324(19):1935-6. [DOI:10.1001/jama.2020.21946]
 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Ways to safely
seek care during COVID-19 [Internet]. 2019 [Updated: 2020 July
21]. Availebale from: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-
 World Health Organization. Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)
technical guidance: Infection prevention and control. Geneva:
World Health Organization; 2020.
 Lagier JC, Million M, Gautret P, Colson P, Cortaredona S, Giraud-
Gatineau A, et al. Outcomes of 3,737 COVID-19 patients
treated with hydroxychloroquine/azithromycin and other regimens
in Marseille, France: A retrospective analysis. Travel Medicine
and Infectious Disease. 2020; 36:101791. [DOI:10.1016/j.
tmaid.2020.101791] [PMID] [PMCID]
 Islam MS, Sarkar T, Khan SH, Kamal A-HM, Hasan SM, Kabir
A, et al. COVID-19-related infodemic and its impact on
public health: A global social media analysis. The American
Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. 2020; 103(4):1621-9.
[DOI:10.4269/ajtmh.20-0812] [PMID] [PMCID]
 Le Roux G, Sinno-Tellier S, Descatha A. COVID-19: home poisoning
throughout the containment period. The Lancet Public
Health; 2020. [DOI:10.1016/S2468-2667(20)30095-5]
 Mohammadi AB, Vahabzadeh M. A concurrent outbreak of
COVID-19 and methanol poisoning in Iran: Is this the time to
make amendments to alcohol drinking laws? European Journal
of Clinical and Experimental Medicine. 2020; 18(3):252-3.
 Soltaninejad K. Methanol mass poisoning outbreak, a consequence
of COVID-19 pandemic and misleading messages on
social media. The International Journal of Occupational and
Environmental Medicine. 2020; 11(3):148. [DOI:10.34172/ijoem.
2020.1983] [PMID] [PMCID]
 Hassanian-Moghaddam H, Zamani N, Kolahi AA, McDonald
R, Hovda KE. Double trouble: Methanol outbreak in the wake
of the COVID-19 pandemic in Iran-a cross-sectional assessment.
Critical Care. 2020; 24(1):1-3. [DOI:10.1186/s13054-020-03140-w]
 Neufeld M, Lachenmeier DW, Ferreira‐Borges C, Rehm J. Is
alcohol an ”Essential Good” during COVID‐19? Yes, but only as
a disinfectant! Alcoholism Clinical and Experimental Research.
2020; 44(9):1906-9. [DOI:10.1111/acer.14417] [PMID] [PMCID]
 Gouda AS, Khattab AM, Mégarbane B. Lessons from a methanol
poisoning outbreak in Egypt: Six case reports. World Journal
of Critical Care Medicine. 2020; 9(3):54. [DOI:10.5492/wjccm.
v9.i3.54] [PMID] [PMCID]
 Dear K, Grayson L, Nixon R. Potential methanol toxicity and
the importance of using a standardised alcohol-based hand rub
formulation in the era of COVID-19. Antimicrobial Resistance &
Infection Control. 2020; 9(1):1-3. [DOI:10.1186/s13756-020-00788-
5] [PMID] [PMCID]
 Patidar NJ, Juengling AM, Narayanan M, Spencer J. COVID‐
19 pandemic danger: Acute alcohol intoxication in a 5‐yearold
following ingestion of an ethyl‐alcohol‐based hand sanitiser.
- Abstract Viewed: 31 times
- pdf Downloaded: 65 times