[Self-poisoning with Datura stramonium. 3 case reports].Presse Med. 2002 Jan 19; 31(2):69-72.PM
Datura stramonium is a hallucinogenic plant that causes serious poisoning. Due to its easy availability and strong anticholinergic properties, substance users and teens may use Datura stramonium as a drug. Consumption of any part of the plant can result in severe toxicity.
3 cases of acute self-poisoning by ingestion of Datura stramonium are reported. The patients presented with a typical anticholinergic syndrome: agitation, confusion, hallucinations and combative behaviour; all of them had mydriasis, but dry mouth and tachycardia were less common. All these 3 subjects had a good prognosis but have required hospitalisation because of severe psychiatric derangement with agitated behaviour. The patients were favourably managed with only symptomatic treatment.
This article reviews the clinical syndrome associated with the toxicity. The severity of hallucinations and confusion, associated with pupillary dilation, flushing, dry mouth, and tachycardia, are related with Datura intoxication. Symptomatic treatment is efficient.
Primary care physicians might be informed about the abuse of Datura stramonium, often associated with substance misuse, and the need to educate risk-patients.