Thinking Methadone was a beverage, the male student fell into a coma after drinking it


Doctor Nguyen Trung Nguyen, Director of the Center for Poison Control, Bach Mai Hospital (Hanoi), said the Center to receive patients with HQ. (male, 15 years old in Hanoi) was hospitalized in a coma, respiratory failure due to methadone poisoning (a substance used to treat addiction to drugs used in the addiction control program).

According to my family members D, at about 12 o’clock on April 19, Mr. D. When I got home from school, I opened the refrigerator and saw a pink bottle of water, then took it to drink refreshments. After a few hours, you D. shortness of breath, nausea, a systemic itchy rash, and eyelid edema were present, accompanied by poisoning manifestations.

Easy to drink wrongly because Methadone is pink like juice – Artwork

The teen is transferred to the Poison Control Center by his family in a coma, respiratory failure, intubation, and respiratory support. After a day of active treatment, detoxification, the patient’s condition D. has stabilized again, through a critical period, however should continue to be closely monitored by medical staff.

According to Dr. Nguyen, this is not the first case of poisoning by mistaking methadone. Before that, the Center for Poisoning also received and treated for a number of other cases of poisoning due to mistakenly ingested methadone. They also mistakenly drink methadone solution at home because they think it is strawberry juice or soft drink.

Methadone is one of the opioids, used as an alternative to drugs, especially heroin, in the detox management program. For addicts, drinking Methadone solution will help the attack, but for ordinary people, when drinking this substance, it is easy to cause poisoning lasting for many days, which can lead to apnea, coma and death. The cases of methadone poisoning are very severe, the toxicity is similar to heroin, but the poisoning time is longer.

With this situation, doctors believe that methadone replacement drug addicts need to be managed more tightly. Currently, the drug addicts are managed at the Center, provided with drugs (Methadone) to be taken by mouth on the spot. In the near future, if drug addicts are allowed to bring this substance home to use and drink at home, the management must be stricter and more careful to avoid methadone poisoning caused by mistreatment.

Dr. Nguyen recommends that if a loved one has mistakenly taken methadone, if the patient is awake, they can give it to drink and induce vomiting. In case the patient is slow, wheezing, it is necessary to conduct CPR on the spot according to the available conditions and promptly call an ambulance to take the patient to the nearest medical facility.

Recently, the Ministry of Health has implemented a pilot scheme to provide patients with multi-day methadone treatment for opioid addiction treatment in 3 localities, namely Dien Bien, Lai Chau, Hai Phong. This is considered a very significant solution in the Covid-19 epidemic affecting patients’ travel and health facilities. However, besides the effects of long-term medicine delivery such as saving travel time for patients (in mountainous areas, roads are difficult to travel); suitable with the job characteristics of some people working in office hours, drivers, fishermen …, the long-term supply of drugs can also bring a number of risks, in which there may be cases of mistaken drinking.

The Ministry of Health said that deploying multi-day methadone to patients also has some risks such as children or others using the wrong drug. To minimize this risk, the conditions for the patient to bring the drug back also set out specific criteria for selection. In addition, advising the patient to understand the dangers of mistakenly taking the other person as well as writing warnings on the bottle’s sub-label as well as monitoring and training measures for health workers on handling Another drink will help reduce this risk.



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