When should intentional poisoning or suicide be suspected in heavy metal toxicity?

Updated: Dec 31, 2020
  • Author: Adefris Adal, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Sage W Wiener, MD  more...
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Answer

Arsenic is frequently used for homicidal or suicidal purposes. Thoroughly scrutinize all arsenic toxicity cases for evidence of such activity. Report all cases with possible homicidal association to the proper legal authorities before discharge. Patients with suspected suicidal intent should undergo psychiatric evaluation before discharge from hospital.

Please refer to the relevant articles (see Arsenic ToxicityLead ToxicityMercury ToxicityIron Toxicity) or contact a medical toxicologist for more specific recommendations.


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