Background Poisoning is one of the key categories of adverse events that cause a large number of hospital admissions. With the recent availability of detailed injury data it is possible to provide useful information about the demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with poisonings that warrant additional analysis and is important for policy implications. The aim of this study is to review emergency department (ED) visits for poisonings reported through Injury database (IDB), Värmland, and to evaluate demographic and clinical characteristics of poisonings by intent.
Methods Using data from the IDB, Värmland, we compared poisoning trends by poisoning intent (accidental vs suicide attempt) from 2007 to 2013. We also analysed poisoning cases by age, sex and mechanism of intoxication using distribution tabulation and logistic regression.
Results According to the IDB data, ED visits for suicide attempt by poisonings showed continuous increases from 2007 to 2013. Continuous and somewhat sharp increases were seen in suicide attempt by poisonings resulting from prescribed drugs during the period. By contrast, levelling off or steady declines in accidental poisonings were observed both in all poisoning cases and poisonings resulting from prescribed medicine. Age, sex, year and mechanism of intoxication were significantly associated with suicide attempt by poisonings among the ED visits due to poisoning cases.
Conclusions Inequalities in suicide attempt by poisonings exist between ages and sexes. Significant increasing trends of these self-inflicted poisonings, especially resulting from prescribed medicine, show in ED visits for poisonings when analysing IDB, Värmland database, which must be further compared with other Swedish IDBs to be resolved. The IDB data provide an opportunity to better understand poisoning mechanisms and associated risk factors, which is important for poisoning prevention practice and research.
- prescribed medicine
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