Arsine Poisoning Follow-up

Updated: Feb 16, 2019
  • Author: Kermit D Huebner, MD, FACEP; Chief Editor: Duane C Caneva, MD, MSc  more...
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Follow-up

Further Outpatient Care

Monitor the patient for signs of chronic arsenic toxicity.

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Further Inpatient Care

See the list below:

  • All patients who have suspected arsine exposure should be carefully observed for 24 hours.

  • Monitor renal function; initiate hemodialysis as necessary for acute renal failure.

  • Monitor hemoglobin levels; perform transfusions to maintain oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood.

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Inpatient & Outpatient Medications

Chelating agents (eg, BAL) may be used to treat chronic arsenic toxicity. [19]  Chronic arsenic toxicity from arsine exposure is treated no differently than exposure from other sources. See Arsenic Toxicity for more information.

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Deterrence/Prevention

Train workers in high-risk industries to avoid toxic arsine exposures. Screen workers in the same environment as those persons already exposed to acute arsine poison.

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Complications

Possible complications include the following:

  • Death – Overwhelming exposures cause rapid death from massive hemolysis; in those who survive acute exposures, most deaths occur from renal failure.
  • Chronic arsenic toxicity – Patients who survive acute arsine exposure may develop chronic arsenic toxicity, including anemia and peripheral neuropathy.
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Prognosis

Patients who reach medical attention should survive with supportive medical care. Historically, patients who developed renal failure had 100% mortality. More recent (but still dated) studies report a mortality rate from arsine poisoning of approximately 25%.

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Patient Education

For patient education information, see the  First Aid and Injuries Center, as well as Chemical Warfare and Personal Protective Equipment.

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