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First Aid for Calla Lily Poisoning

Calla lily constitute a wide variety of ornamental plants with trumpet-shaped flowers. The plant is toxic in nature; particularly, its roots. Calla Lily Poisoning is the accidental or intentional intake of the plant or plant product containing the compound.

What is Calla Lily Poisoning?

  • Calla lily constitute a wide variety of ornamental plants with trumpet-shaped flowers. The plant is toxic in nature; particularly, its roots
  • Calla Lily Poisoning is the accidental or intentional intake of the plant or plant product containing the compound
  • The condition is diagnosed based upon the clinical history, combination of signs and symptoms, and additional tests (that may include, in some cases, radiological studies and laboratory tests)

Calla Lily Poisoning may be also referred to variously as the following:

  • Arum Lily Poisoning
  • Calla Lily Toxicity
  • Miniature Calla Lily Poisoning
  • Pig Lily Poisoning
  • Trumpet Lily Poisoning

What are the Causes of Calla Lily Poisoning?

  • Calla Lily Poisoning is caused by eating parts of the calla lily plant. Eye exposure to the plant may also result in symptoms
  • This intake could be accidental, or in some cases intentional, to bring self-harm
  • The poisonous compounds of the plant include oxalic acid and the protein asparagine that is found in all plant parts; but, the roots are the most toxic parts

Note: The compound can interact with other prescribed or non-prescribed medications in the body. Such interactions may enhance the therapeutic effects of other medications being taken, resulting in undesired side effects.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Calla Lily Poisoning?

The signs and symptoms can vary from one individual to another. It may be mild in some and severe in others. The signs and symptoms of Calla Lily Poisoning may include:

  • Burning sensation in the mouth and throat
  • Swelling of the mouth and tongue; unable to speak clearly or swallow
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Contact with the eye may result in pain, redness, watery eyes, and potential damage to the cornea of the eye

How is First Aid administered for Calla Lily Poisoning?

First Aid tips for Calla Lily Poisoning:

  • Call 911 or your local emergency help number, for emergency assistance
  • Call the Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222 (or your local poison control center) for further instructions
  • Provide them with information such as the compound taken, quantity and time of ingestion, age, weight and general health status of affected individual
  • Confirm that the airways are protected; also, ensure breathing and the presence of pulse
  • Clean the mouth to remove any remaining pieces; wipe mouth with a wet cloth
  • Unless instructed by a healthcare professional, DO NOT induce vomiting in the affected individual
  • Otherwise, following an ingestion of the substance, immediately give milk to drink
  • If skin exposure or involvement of the eye has occurred, then wash thoroughly with copious amounts of water (for at least 15 minutes)
  • Take individual to emergency room (ER) for further treatment
  • Always try to take the plant or plant part to the ER

The emergency medical health professional might perform the following steps towards treating the condition:

  • Monitor vital signs
  • Medically manage symptoms and provide breathing support, if necessary
  • Administer fluids by an intravenous drip line

Who should administer First Aid for Calla Lily Poisoning?

First aid for Calla Lily Poisoning is administered by healthcare professionals.

  • The individual who is affected, or someone near, should call 911 for emergency assistance (or the local emergency number)
  • They should also call the poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 (or the local poison control center) and follow instructions

What is the Prognosis of Calla Lily Poisoning?

  • The prognosis of Calla Lily Poisoning is dependent on the amount of substance consumed, time between consumption and treatment, severity of the symptoms, as well as general health status of the patient
  • Individuals are mostly able to recover from the symptoms that occur due to poisoning within a few days, with appropriate medication and early support
  • In case of severe symptoms due to severe contact/poisoning, it may worsen the outcome and/or prolong time of recovery. Nevertheless, no life-threatening complications are generally noted

In general, toxicities are common situations in the emergency departments. A majority of the cases are often not fatal, when appropriate treatment is given.

How can Calla Lily Poisoning be Prevented?

Calla Lily Poisoning can be prevented by:

  • Avoiding eating wild berries and plants, especially if you have no information about them
  • Following working in the garden or fields, hiking, or camping, always wash hands thoroughly, prior to eating anything
  • Being aware of basic first aid steps in case of an emergency (such as inadvertent poisoning)

What are certain Crucial Steps to be followed?

  • Call 911 (or your local emergency number) for emergency assistance, if symptoms are life-threatening
  • Call Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222 (or the local poison control center) and follow the recommend steps
  • It would be helpful if the following information is readily available:
    • Type, amount and time of consumption of the substance
    • Age and weight of the individual
    • And, the overall health status of the individual

What are some Useful Resources for Additional Information?

National Capital Poison Center (USA)
3201 New Mexico Ave, Suite 310 Washington, DC 20016
Administrative Line: (202) 362-3867
Emergency Line: 1 (800) 222-1222
Fax: (202) 362-8377
Email: pc@poison.org
Website: http://www.poison.org

American Association of Poison Control Centers (USA)
515 King St., Suite 510, Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: (703) 894-1858
Email: info@aapcc.org
Website: http://www.aapcc.org

National Poisons Centre (New Zealand)
Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago
PO Box 913 Dunedin 9054, New Zealand
Phone: 0800 POISON (0800 764 766)
Website: http://www.poisons.co.nz

NSW Poisons Information Centre (Australia)
Hawkesbury Rd & Hainsworth Street, Westmead NSW 2145, Australia
Phone: +61 13 11 26
Email: nswpoisons@chw.edu.au
Website: https://www.poisonsinfo.nsw.gov.au

British Columbia Drug and Poison Information Centre (Canada)
Room 0063, BC Centre for Disease Control
655 West 12th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V5Z 4R4 Canada
Phone: (604) 682-5050
Toll-Free: 1 (800) 567-8911
Fax: (604) 707-2807
Website: http://www.capcc.ca

Poisons Information Centre (South Africa)
Room 411, Institute of Child Health
Red Cross Children's Hospital
Klipfontein Road, Rondebosch, 7700, Cape Town South Africa
Phone: +27 21 658 5308
Fax: +27 21  650 4492
Email: poisonsinformation@uct.ac.za
Website: https://www.afritox.co.za

National Poisons Information Service (United Kingdom)
City Hospital Dudley Rd, Birmingham United Kingdom B187QH
Phone: +44 844 892 0111
Fax: +44 121 507 55 88
Email: mail@npis.org
Website: http://www.npis.org

References and Information Sources used for the Article:

https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002864.htm (accessed on 07/20/2017)

http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/calla-lily/ (accessed on 07/20/2017)

http://homeguides.sfgate.com/dangerous-eat-calla-lilies-80113.html (accessed on 07/20/2017)

https://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm253338.htm (accessed on 07/20/2017)

Helpful Peer-Reviewed Medical Articles:

Routledge, P. A., Good, A. M., White, J., Isbister, G. K., & Warrell, D. A. (2014). Poisoning due to fungi, plants, and animals. Oxford Desk Reference: Toxicology, 315.

Kanegae, Y., Tanaka, C., Ebihara, Y., Uematsu, S., Fukami, M., & Kageyama, K. (2013). First report of pythium root rot of calla lily (Zantedeschia rehmannii) caused by Pythium myriotylum in Japan. Annual Report of the Kanto-Tosan Plant Protection Society, (60), 71-73.

Li, J., Lin, W., & Zhou, L. (2016). Effect of light intensity on tuber morphology, starch content and leaf chlorophyll content of calla lily. Journal of South China Agricultural University, 37(3), 62-66.

RICHARDSON, J. A. Toxic Substances.

Patel, S., Nag, M. K., Daharwal, S. J., Singh, M. R., & Singh, D. (2013). Plant Toxins: An Overview. Research Journal of Pharmacology and Pharmacodynamics (RJPPD), 5(5).

Poppenga, R. H. (2010). Poisonous plants. Molecular, clinical and environmental toxicology, 123-175.

Cortinovis, C., & Caloni, F. (2017). Plants Toxic to Farm and Companion Animals. Plant Toxins, 107-134.

Farthing, K. (2015). Poisonous Plants: Understanding the Need for Accurate Identification and Timely Information. Laboratory Medicine, 27(4), 260-263.