Indian turnip

Alternative names 
Arisaema triphyllum; Bog onion; Brown dragon; Jack-in-the-pulpit; Wake robin; Wild turnip

Definition
Poisoning caused by consumption of plant material from Jack-in-the-pulpit.

Poisonous Ingredient

     
  • oxalic acid  
  • asparagine, a protein found in this plant

Note: The roots are the most dangerous part or the plant.

Where Found  

     
  • Arisaema triphyllum (Jack-in-the-pulpit)

Note: This list may not be all inclusive.

Symptoms

     
  • body as a whole       o burning in mouth       o swelling of tongue       o swelling of mouth       o slurred speech  
  • eyes, ears, nose, and throat       o burning pain in the throat       o teary eyes  
  • gastrointestinal       o nausea and vomiting       o diarrhea

Home Treatment

Wipe out the mouth with a cold, wet cloth. Give milk to drink.

Wash skin with water. If eye involvement, irrigate eyes with water.

Before Calling Emergency
Determine the following information:

     
  • the patient’s age, weight, and condition  
  • the name of the plant and the parts eaten  
  • the time it was swallowed  
  • the amount swallowed

Poison Control, or a local emergency number
They will instruct you if it is necessary to take the person to the hospital. See Poison Control centers for telephone numbers and addresses. Bring the plant with you to the emergency room for identification.

What to expect at the emergency room

     
  • Treat the symptoms.

Expectations (prognosis)
Plants containing oxalic acid may cause swelling severe enough to block the airway, but this is very rare.

Johns Hopkins patient information

Last revised: December 8, 2012
by Brenda A. Kuper, M.D.

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All ArmMed Media material is provided for information only and is neither advice nor a substitute for proper medical care. Consult a qualified healthcare professional who understands your particular history for individual concerns.