Thursday, December 12, 2013

Nicotine Overdose Signs and symptoms

Nicotine overdose
is the result of overexposure to nicotine, usually from ingestion or skin contact. Nicotine can be especially toxic to children. Liquid preparations containing nicotine are very toxic and can be fatal.


Common causes of nicotine overdoses are children chewing cigarette butts or nicotine gum, skin contact with electronic cigarette nicotine liquid and nicotine-based pesticides, as well as using nicotine patches, gum or lozenges while continuing to smoke.

Time Frame

Nicotine overdose symptoms occur within 15 minutes after exposure to toxic levels of nicotine.


Symptoms of nicotine overdose start with nausea, drooling, stomach cramps and sweating. Symptoms can increase in severity to vomiting, weakness, breathing difficulties and fainting. Acute nicotine overdose symptoms are heart palpitations, seizures, convulsions and coma. If not treated, acute nicotine overdose can result in death.


If nicotine overdose symptoms occur, call a poison control center immediately. Vomiting should not be induced, unless directed to do so by emergency personnel.


At lower levels of overdose, stopping the exposure is usually sufficient to resolve symptoms. At higher levels, especially in children, oral charcoal or gastric lavage may be required. Extreme levels of overdose may require hospitalization.

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