Activated charcoal protocol
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Activated charcoal is first line treatment for most oral overdoses.
When to take activated charcoal
Activated charcoal should be used for treatment of any poisonings by mouth, EXCEPT the following substances, for which it MUST NOT be used:)
- Petroleum distillates (often found in cleaning products)
- Corrosive substances (including bleach)
- Alcohols (including those used in cleaning products and those intended for human consumption)
- Malathion (a common insecticide)
- Cyanides and metal salts including iron and lithium salts (often found in antipsychotic medications)
How to take activated charcoal
- You must ensure that transfer to definitive clinical care is happening as fast as possible - call an ambulance.
- You must mix 50g of food or pharmaceutical grade activated charcoal with water, or a non caffeinated soft drink. Add enough liquid to make it drinkable.
- You must ensure that the poisoned person drinks all of this mixture.