Sorbents – what is it and how do they help with poisoning
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Many pathologies have similar symptoms, how to understand that poisoning has occurred?
Food poisoning occurs due to the entry of opportunistic microorganisms into the gastrointestinal tract.
Symptoms appear within a few hours after eating food with toxins. The most common ones are nausea, vomiting or diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fever. The symptoms of poisoning are similar to the manifestations of many diseases, so it is important to pay attention to the incubation period and the circle of people in whom it manifests itself. The first signs of intoxication of the body may appear as early as 6 hours after eating contaminated foods.
If we are talking about food poisoning, then the symptoms of the disease will be present in everyone who has tried food. The intensity of their manifestation depends on the immune characteristics of a particular organism.
From my observations, food poisoning is most often mild and does not require serious treatment.
That is, it is possible to cope with poisoning without medical help?
It is not always so. If the poisoned person has an increased frequency of vomiting, confusion, blurred vision, and bloody stools, you should immediately call a doctor. Such manifestations are especially dangerous for children, pregnant women, pensioners and people with chronic diseases.
I advise you to pay attention to other symptoms characteristic of food poisoning. These are abdominal pain, prolonged diarrhea and fever. In the first day, such symptoms are a response to intoxication of the body. If the stool does not return to normal within three days, and the temperature is above 38 degrees for more than 72 hours, you should consult a doctor.
Mild poisoning can be stopped on the first day. To do this, it is enough to refuse food, drink a lot and take enterosorbents.
Are sorbents used in medicine only for poisoning? What is their operating principle?
Sorbents are drugs that neutralize toxins by absorbing them. In our practice, they are used for food, alcohol, drugs, as well as intestinal infections.
And even with endogenous intoxications (ARVI, allergic reactions, dermatitis, helminthic invasions, liver and kidney failure, pancreatitis, etc.), sorbents are also taken.
But sorbents are different. How do they differ from each other?
The main differences in the active substance. Doctors select a sorbent depending on the situation.
Here are the most common drugs with sorbent properties:
- Dioctahedral smectite – natural clay;
- Polymethylsiloxane polyhydrate is a synthetic gel-like organosilicon polymer;
- Povidone is a synthetic low molecular weight polymer of vinylpyrrolidone;
- Silicon dioxide colloidal – synthetic highly dispersed silicon dioxide;
- Activated carbon – birch wood and / or coconut shell;
- Lignin is a by-product of cellulose production.
Tell me, should a sorbent be kept in a first-aid kit at home?
Many of our citizens keep everything in the first-aid kit, but not sorbents (laughs). These medicines are available without a prescription, so I advise you to buy a couple and keep in the first aid kit for first aid for acute food poisoning. They are also great to take with you when you travel.
What should you pay attention to when choosing a sorbent?
First of all, on the effectiveness of food poisoning. Sorbents should be of high capacity. Simply put, this is its “power”. It shows how much substance the sorbent can absorb per unit of its mass. For example, colloidal silicon dioxide (Polysorb or Prostosorb) has a capacity of at least 300m2 / g. Natural clay (Smecta) or activated carbon – about 100-150 m2 / g, and lignin (Prolifepan, Filtrum) – only 20-40 m2 / g. This property directly affects the rate of elimination of a large number of toxins.
These drugs should have simple storage conditions and a convenient form for transportation (small volume, weight, the ability to carry in hand luggage of an air passenger). And do not forget to pay attention to the minimum number of side effects and contraindications for short-term use.
These criteria are best met by:
- Colloidal silicon dioxide – absorbs bacteria and their toxins, allergens, drugs and poisons, salts of heavy metals, radionuclides, alcohol.Indications: various acute and chronic intoxications, diarrhea, purulent-septic diseases, various types of allergies, hyperbilirubinemia (hepatitis), hyperazotemia (chronic renal failure). It has an increased sorption capacity in relation to proteins (bacterial infection, allergy).
- Natural clay is an antidiarrheal drug with sorption properties. Stabilizes the mucous barrier of the gastrointestinal tract, has an enveloping effect. Sorbs enterotoxins, viruses and bacteria without affecting beneficial microflora. Neutralizes the acidity of the stomach, breaks down bacterial toxins, suppresses pathogenic intestinal microflora. Children can be mixed with porridge, compote, milk mixture.
Tell us more about how to take sorbents correctly?
Sorbents should be taken 2 hours before or after taking other medications, meals, be sure to drink plenty of water.
In the treatment of food poisoning, the use of sorbents for up to 5-7 days is allowed. With a longer intake, the likelihood of side effects in the form of constipation increases. Not the most pleasant feeling.
Most sorbents absorb everything in the gastrointestinal tract: not only harmful substances, but vitamins, mineral salts, etc. Long-term use is fraught with an imbalance of microflora.
To avoid complications, before taking the medicine, it is recommended to consult a doctor, and also carefully read the instructions.