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    Adrenergic bronchodilator overdose

    Adrenergic bronchodilators are inhaled medicines that help open up the air passages. They are used to treat asthma and chronic bronchitis. Adrenergic bronchodilator overdose occurs when someone accidentally or intentionally takes more than the normal or recommended amount of this medication.

    This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual poison exposure. If you have an exposure, you should call your local emergency number (such as 911) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.

    Poisonous Ingredient

    • Albuterol
    • Bitolterol
    • Ephedrine
    • Epinephrine
    • Isoetharine
    • Isoproterenol
    • Metaproterenol
    • Pirbuterol
    • Racepinephrine
    • Ritodrine
    • Terbutaline

    Note: This list may not be all-inclusive.

    Where Found

    • Albuterol (Proventil, Ventolin)
    • Bitolterol (Tornalate)
    • Ephedrine (Ephed II)
    • Epinephrine (Adrenalin, AsthmaHaler, Bronitin Mist, Bronkaid Mist, Medihaler-Epi, Primatene Mist, EpiPen Auto-Injector, Sus-Phrine, Twinject)
    • Ethylnorepinephrine (Bronkephrine)
    • Isoetharine (Arm-a-Med Isoetharine, Bronkometer, Bronkosol, Dey-Dose Isoetharine, Dispos-a-Med Isoetharine, Dey-Lute Isoetharine)
    • Isoproterenol (Aerolone, Dey-Dose Isoproterenol, Dispos-a-Med Isoproterenol, Isuprel, Medihaler-Iso, Norisodrine Aerotrol, Vapo-Iso)
    • Metaproterenol (Alupent, Arm-a-Med Metaproterenol, Dey-Dose Metaproterenol, Dey-Lute Metaproterenol, Metaprel)
    • Pirbuterol (Maxair)
    • Racepinephrine (AsthmaNefrin, Dey-Dose Racepinephrine, Vaponefrin)
    • Terbutaline (Breathaire, Brethine, Bricanyl)

    Note: This list may not be all-inclusive.

    Symptoms

    • Airways and lungs
      • Difficulty breathing
      • Shallow breathing
      • Rapid breathing
      • No breathing
    • Bladder and kidneys
      • No urine output
    • Eyes, ears, nose, and throat
      • Blurred vision
      • Dilated pupils
      • Throat burning
    • Heart and blood vessels
      • High blood pressure, which then leads to low blood pressure
      • Rapid heartbeat
    • Nervous system
      • Chills
      • Coma
      • Convulsions
      • Fever
      • Irritability
      • Nervousness
      • Tingling of hands and feet
      • Tremor
    • Skin
      • Blue lips and fingernails
    • Stomach and intestines
      • Nausea
      • Vomiting

    Home Care

    Seek immediate medical help.

    Before Calling Emergency

    Determine the following information:

    • Patient's age, weight, and condition
    • The name of the product (ingredients and strengths if known)
    • Time it was swallowed
    • The amount swallowed

    Poison Control

    The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.

    This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    Take the container with you to the hospital, if possible.

    See: Poison control center - emergency number

    What to Expect at the Emergency Room

    The health care provider will measure and monitor the patient's vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated as appropriate. The patient may receive:

    • Activated charcoal
    • Breathing support (artificial respiration)
    • Fluids through a vein (IV)
    • Tube through the mouth into the stomach to empty the stomach (gastric lavage)

    Blood tests may show changes in blood sugar and low potassium levels.

    Outlook (Prognosis)

    Survival past 24 hours is usually a good sign that recovery will follow.

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          A Closer Look

            Tests for Adrenergic bronchodilator overdose

              Review Date: 12/15/2011

              Reviewed By: Eric Perez, MD, St. Luke's / Roosevelt Hospital Center, NY, NY, and Pegasus Emergency Group (Meadowlands and Hunterdon Medical Centers), NJ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

              The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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              St. Luke's Hospital - 232 South Woods Mill Road - Chesterfield, MO 63017 Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
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