What is the significance of the presence of lactic acidosis in the diagnosis of cyanide toxicity?

Updated: May 30, 2020
  • Author: Inna Leybell, MD; Chief Editor: Michael A Miller, MD  more...
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Multiple casualties may present after a fire or hazardous materials incident involving cyanides. In some cases, the individuals involved may be experiencing collective hysteria. If physical findings are absent, cyanide poisoning is unlikely. If lactic acidosis is not present, cyanide poisoning has not occurred. Provide supportive care (oxygen) to all individuals presenting because of the event until absence of cyanide poisoning can be verified.

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