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Encyclopedia > Overdose

A drug overdose occurs when a A chemical substance is any material substance used in or obtained by a process in chemistry: A chemical compound is a substance consisting of two or more chemical elements that are chemically combined in fixed proportions. A chemical element is a substance that cannot be divided or changed into different... chemical substance (i.e. In J. R. R. Tolkiens world of Middle-earth, the Drúedain, also known as Drûg, Woses, Wild Men of the Woods and Púkel-men, were a strange race of Men which was counted amongst the Edain. The Drûg lived among the Second House of Men... drug) is ingested in quantities and/or This page refers to concentration in the chemical sense. For the psychological concept of concentration, see attention. For the game show of the same name, see concentration (game show). Concentration is a very common concept used in chemistry and related fields. It is the measure of how much of a... concentrations large enough to overwhelm the Homeostasis or homoeostasis is the property of an open system, especially living organisms, to regulate its internal environment so as to maintain a stable condition, by means of multiple dynamic equilibrium adjustments controlled by interrelated regulation mechanisms. The term was coined in 1932 by Walter Cannon from two Greek words... homeostasis of a For other uses, see Life (disambiguation) and Living (disambiguation). Life is a multi-faceted concept with no simple definition; this article is confined to the primary meanings in biology; articles on life in other senses are included in the article life (disambiguation). Defining the concept of life Life has a... living In biology and ecology, an organism (in Greek organon = instrument) is a living being. The origin of life and the relationships between its major lineages are controversial. Two main grades may be distinguished, the prokaryotes and eukaryotes. The prokaryotes are generally considered to represent two separate domains, called the Bacteria... organism, causing severe Illness can be a synonym for disease or it can be a persons perception of having poor health. Disease is an actual physical, pathophysiological process which can cause an abnormal condition of the body or mind. Illness and disease are not necessarily the same. Most people who have a... illness or This page deals with the cessation of life. For other meanings of death, see death (disambiguation). Death is a term that can refer to either the termination of life in a living system, or the state of that organism after that event. A common perception of death is a grim... death. Essentially it is a type of For biological toxicity, see toxin and poison. For use of the term in reference to catalysts, see there; For use of the term in reference to fissionable material, see nuclear reactor; If you want more information on poisoning call your local poison control center; If you believe you have been... poisoning.

Contents

Types

The word "overdose" implies that there is a safe dosage and therefore the term overdose is commonly only applied to In J. R. R. Tolkiens world of Middle-earth, the Drúedain, also known as Drûg, Woses, Wild Men of the Woods and Púkel-men, were a strange race of Men which was counted amongst the Edain. The Drûg lived among the Second House of Men... drugs, not This article is about the dangerous substance. For the band see Poison. The skull and crossbones symbol traditionally used to label a poisonous substance. In the context of biology, poisons are substances that cause injury, illness, or death to organisms, usually by chemical reaction or other activity on the molecular... poisons.


Drug overdoses are often used to commit Suicide (from Latin sui caedere, to kill oneself) is the act of intentionally ending ones own life. Attitudes vary on suicide from culture to culture. It is considered a sin in many religions, and a crime in some jurisdictions. On the other hand, some cultures have viewed it as... suicide, but many drug overdoses are unintentional and are usually the result of either irresponsible behavior (such as overindulging at a A college (Latin collegium) can be the name of any group of colleagues; originally it meant a group of people living together under a common set of rules (con-, together + leg-, law). As a consequence members of colleges were originally styled fellow and still are in some places. However, it... college keg party), or the misreading of product labels (such as taking 4 pills every 1 hour instead of 1 pill every 4 hours).


A common unintentional overdose in young children involves multi-vitamins containing General Name, Symbol, Number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metal Group, Period, Block 8 (VIIIB), 4 , d Density, Hardness 7874 kg/m3, 4.0 Appearance lustrous metallic with a greyish tinge Atomic properties Atomic weight 55.845 amu Atomic radius (calc.) 140 (156) pm Covalent radius 125 pm van... iron. General Name, Symbol, Number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metal Group, Period, Block 8 (VIIIB), 4 , d Density, Hardness 7874 kg/m3, 4.0 Appearance lustrous metallic with a greyish tinge Atomic properties Atomic weight 55.845 amu Atomic radius (calc.) 140 (156) pm Covalent radius 125 pm van... Iron is component of the 3-dimensional structure of hemoglobin Hemoglobin or haemoglobin is the iron-containing oxygen-transport metalloprotein in the red cells of the blood in mammals and other animals. The molecule consists of globin, the apoprotein, and four haem groups, an organic molecule with an iron atom. Mutations in the gene for... hemoglobin In science, a molecule is the smallest particle of a pure chemical substance that still retains its chemical composition and properties. A molecule consists of multiple atoms joined by shared pairs of electrons in a covalent bond. It may consist of atoms of the same chemical element, as with oxygen... molecule in Red blood cells (erythrocytes) are present in the blood and help carry oxygen to the rest of the cells in the body Blood is a circulating tissue composed of fluid plasma and cells (red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets). Medical terms related to blood often begin in hemo- or... blood, used to transport General Name, Symbol, Number Oxygen, O, 8 Chemical series nonmetals Group, Period, Block 16 (VIA), 2, p Density, Hardness 1.429 kg/m3, NA Appearance colorless Atomic properties Atomic weight 15.9994 g/mol Atomic radius (calc.) 60 (48) pm Covalent radius 73 pm van der Waals radius 152 pm... oxygen to living cells. When taken in small amounts, iron allows the body to replenish 3-dimensional structure of hemoglobin Hemoglobin or haemoglobin is the iron-containing oxygen-transport metalloprotein in the red cells of the blood in mammals and other animals. The molecule consists of globin, the apoprotein, and four haem groups, an organic molecule with an iron atom. Mutations in the gene for... hemoglobin, but in large amounts it causes severe PH or ph or pH or Ph may be: In chemistry, pH is a measure of acidity. Also in chemistry, specifically organic chemistry, Ph stands for a phenyl ring. Philippines (ISO country code). phot (ph), a measurement of illumination. In computational complexity theory, PH is the union of all complexity... pH imbalances in the body. If this overdose is not treated with Chelation therapy is a process involving the use of chelating agents such as EDTA to remove heavy metals from the body. Discovery in medicine Chelating agents were introduced into medicine as a result of the use of poison gas warfare in World War I. The first widely used chelating agent... chelation therapy, it can lead to death.


Symptoms

Symptoms of overdose occur in various forms:

  • Exaggerated form of normal action (sleepiness on antiepileptics, Hypoglycemia is a medical term referring to a pathologic state produced and usually defined by a lower than normal amount of sugar (glucose) in the blood. The term hypoglycemia literally means low blood sugar. Hypoglycemia can produce a variety of symptoms and effects but the principal problems arise from an... hypoglycemia on The structure of insulin Red: carbon; green: oxygen; blue: nitrogen; pink: sulfur. The blue/purple ribbons denote the skeleton [-N-C-C-]n in the proteins amino acid sequence H-[-NH-CHR-CO-]n-OH where R is the part protruding from the skeleton in each amino acid. Insulin... insulin)
  • Other effects due to chemical properties of the medication ( In medicine, metabolic acidosis is a state in which the blood pH is low (under 7.35) due to increased production of H+ by the body or the inability of the body to form HCO3- in the kidney. Its causes are diverse, and its consequences can be serious, including coma... metabolic acidosis in A very old bottle of Aspirin Aspirin or acetylsalicylic acid is a drug in the family of salicylates, often used as an analgesic (against minor pains and aches), antipyretic (against fever), and anti-inflammatory. It has also an anticoagulant (blood thinning) effect and is used in long-term low-doses... aspirin, Liver failure is the final stage of liver disease. By definition, liver failure occurs when the liver is so diseased, and functioning so poorly, that encephalopathy is evident. Any progressive liver disease can result in liver failure; examples include: acetaminophen toxicity, cirrhosis, viral hepatitis, and metastatic cancer of the liver... liver failure due to Acetaminophen (USAN) or paracetamol (INN), is a popular analgesic and antipyretic drug that is used for the relief of fever, headaches, and other minor aches and pains. It is a major ingredient in numerous cold and flu medications and many prescription analgesics. It is remarkably safe in standard doses, but... paracetamol)
  • Non-specific symptoms due to The human central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord. These lie in the midline of the body and are associated with the skull and vertebrae respectively. (see Nervous System) The central nervous system along with the peripheral nervous system comprise a primary division of controls that command... central nervous system irritation ( Confusion can have the following meanings: Unclarity, e.g. arising from ambiguity. A technical concept in cryptography; see Confusion and diffusion. Mental confusion (such as paranoia) may be caused by drugs or mental illness. It is an imprecise term but can help analysing a patients medical condition. This is... confusion, Vertigo can refer to a number of things: Vertigo is a form of dizziness often associated with balance disorder. Vertigo is the title of an Alfred Hitchcock movie. Vertigo is an imprint of comic books and graphic novels published by DC Comics, which is intended for mature audiences. Vertigo is... vertigo, Nausea (Greek Ναυτεία) is the sensation of unease and discomfort in the stomach with an urge to vomit. Nausea is a symptom of many conditions, including motion sickness, morning sickness during pregnancy, viral infections, and other diseases. It is also a side effect of... nausea, Vomiting (or emesis) is the forceful expulsion of the contents of ones stomach through the mouth. Although it probably evolved as a mechanism for expelling ingested poisons, it may be due to many causes not related to poisoning, ranging from gastritis to brain tumors. Antiemetics are sometimes necessary to... vomiting)

Diagnosis and management

The diagnosis can be very difficult if the patient cannot (or refuses to) state which medication has been overdosed. Initially, correcting abnormalities is essential (e.g. forced diuresis or sodium bicarbonate for acidosis).


In some instances, empirical An antidote is a substance which can counteract a form of poisoning. Sometimes, the antidote for a particular toxin is manufactured by injecting the toxin into an animal in small doses and the resulting antibodies are extracted from the animals blood. The venom produced by some snakes and spiders is... antidotes may be administered if there is sufficient indication that the patient has overdosed on a particular type of medication: Naloxone is a drug used to counter the effects of overdosing on opioids such as heroin and morphine. It is marketed under trade names including Narcan, Nalone, and Narcanti. The drug is derived from thebaine and has an extremely high affinity for μ-opioid receptors in the central nervous system... naloxone in An opioid is any agent that binds to opioid receptors found principally in the central nervous system and gastrointestinal tract. There are four broad classes of opioids: endogenous opioid peptides, produced in the body; opium alkaloids, such as morphine (the prototypical opioid) and codeine; semi-synthetic opioids such as heroin... opioids and Flumazenil (flumazepil, Anexate®, Lanexat®, Mazicon®, Romazicon®) is a benzodiazepine antagonist, used as an antidote in the treatment of benzodiazepine overdose. It reverses the effects of benzodiazepines by competitive inhibition of benzodiazepine receptors. The onset of action is very fast, about one to two minutes. The activity peak is six to... flumazenil in Benzodiazepine tablets The benzodiazepines are a class of drugs with hypnotic, anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, amnestic and muscle relaxant properties. Benzodiazepines are often used for short-term relief of severe, disabling anxiety or insomnia. Long-term use can be problematic due to the development of tolerance and dependency. They are believed to... benzodiazepines. Rapid reversal of symptoms may serve as proof in these cases.


Common causes

Common types of Many drugs are provided in tablet form. A drug is any substance that can be used to treat an illness, relieve a symptom, or modify a chemical process or processes in the body. The word drug is etymologically derived from the Dutch/Low German word droog, which means dry, since... drugs that are overdosed on:

  • Barbiturates are drugs that acts as central nervous system (CNS) depressants, and by virtue of this they produce a wide spectrum of effects, from mild sedation to anesthesia. Some also are used as anticonvulsants. Barbiturates are derivatives of barbituric acid. Medical uses Today barbiturates are mainly used as anticonvulsants and... Barbiturates
    • Seconal is a trademark name for the barbiturate sodium quinalbarbitone. It was widely used recreationaly in the 1960s and 1970s. Nicknamed reds, Seconal came in red capsules. Its main medical uses are for seizures, tension relief (as before surgery), and as a temporary sleep aid. It is fairly addictive, and... Seconal
    • Nembutal
  • The term narcotic, derived from the Greek word for stupor, originally referred to a variety of substances that induced sleep (such state is narcosis). In the U.S. legal context, narcotic refers to opium, opium derivatives, and their semisynthetic or totally synthetic substitutes. Cocaine and coca leaves, which are classified... Narcotics
    • Heroin or diamorphine (INN) (colloquially referred to as junk, babania, horse, golden brown, smack, black tar, big H, lady H, dope, skag, juice, diesel, etc.) is an alkaloid opioid. Heroin is the 3,6-diacetyl derivative of morphine (hence diacetylmorphine) and is synthesised from it by acetylation. The white crystalline... Heroin
  • A stimulant is a drug which increases the activity of the sympathetic nervous system and produces a sense of euphoria or awakeness. Stimulants can be used as recreational drugs, or therapeutically to increase alertness. They are also used and sometimes abused to boost endurance and productivity as well as to... Stimulants
    • Cocaine is a crystalline alkaloid that is obtained from the leaves of the coca plant. It is a stimulant of the central nervous system and an appetite suppressant, creating a euphoric sense of happiness and increased energy. Though most often used recreationally for this effect, cocaine is also a topical... Cocaine
  • Ethyl alcohol, also known as ethanol or grain alcohol, is a flammable, colorless chemical compound, one of the alcohols that is most often found in alcoholic beverages. In common parlance, it is often referred to simply as alcohol. Its chemical formula is C2H5OH. This article is mostly about ethanol as... Ethyl Alcohol
    • Alcoholic beverages are drinks containing ethanol, popularly called alcohol. Alcoholic beverages have been widely used since the remote antiquity by many civilizations around the world, as a component of the standard diet, for hygienic or medical reasons, for their relaxant and euphoric effects, for recreational purposes, artistic inspiration, as aphrodisiacs... Alcoholic beverages
  • For alternative meanings see metal (disambiguation). In chemistry, a metal (Greek: Metallon) is an element that readily forms cations and has metallic bonds, and it is sometimes said that it is similar to a cation in a cloud of electrons. The metals are one of the three groups of elements... Metals
    • General Name, Symbol, Number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metal Group, Period, Block 8 (VIIIB), 4 , d Density, Hardness 7874 kg/m3, 4.0 Appearance lustrous metallic with a greyish tinge Atomic properties Atomic weight 55.845 amu Atomic radius (calc.) 140 (156) pm Covalent radius 125 pm van... Iron

See also

  • This is a list of famous deaths by accidental drug overdose: John Belushi, actor Len Bias, college basketball star Elisa Bridges, Playboy Playmate Lenny Bruce, comedian Tim Buckley, musician Gia Carangi, supermodel Dorothy Dandridge, actress Nick Drake, musician John Entwistle, musician Brian Epstein, Beatles manager Chris Farley, actor Rainer Werner... List of famous deaths by accidental drug overdose

  Results from FactBites:
 
Drug overdose (1942 words)
A drug overdose is the accidental or intentional use of a drug or medicine in an amount that is higher than is normally used.
Overdose of this drug causes liver damage with symptoms that include loss of appetite, tiredness, nausea and vomiting, paleness, and sweating.
Diagnosis of a drug overdose may be based on the symptoms that develop, however, the drug may do extensive damage to the body before significant symptoms develop.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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