Poisoning from an overdose of zinc.
- Various zinc salts such as zinc oxide (relatively nontoxic), zinc acetate, zinc sulfate and zinc chloride
- Multiple mineral supplements
- Multiple vitamin and mineral supplements
- Heated or burned galvanized metal (releases zinc fumes)
Note: This list may not be all inclusive.
- Burning sensation (body)
- Metallic taste
- Body pain
- No urine output
- Shortness of breath
- Yellow eyes or yellow skin
- Watery or bloody diarrhea
- Low blood pressure
Give lots of milk or water immediately.
Before Calling Emergency
Determine the following information:
- The patient’s age, weight, and condition
- The name of the product (as well as the ingredients and strength if known)
- When it was swallowed
- The amount swallowed
Poison Control, or a local emergency number
If you are concerned about a zinc overdose or toxic exposure, seek medical care immediately at the nearest emergency room. See poison control centers for the national telephone number. Take any containers with you to the emergency room.
What to expect at the emergency room
Some or all of the following procedures may be performed:
- Giving milk or water.
- Using gastric lavage (pumping the stomach).
- Administering an antidote.
- Treating other symptoms.
The extent of illness and survival depend on the dosage and how much time passed before treatment. If symptoms are mild, full recovery is typical. If the poisoning is severe, death may occur up to a week after swallowing the poison.
by Martin A. Harms, M.D.
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.