Paracetamol poisoning in Australia
Oct 11, 2019
The Medical Journal of Australia recently published a research report titled “Paracetamol poisoning-related hospital admissions and deaths in Australia, 2004 - 2017.” The article describes a pattern of increasing numbers of paracetamol overdose in New South Wales, with a 77% increase noted between 2004 and 2017. The largest increases in absolute numbers of cases, were for children aged 10 - 14 (from 282 to 656 per year), adolescents aged 15 - 19 (from 1842 to 2972 per year), and young adults aged 20 - 24 (from 1164 to 1605 per year). About 75% of all cases were attributed to deliberate self-harm. The median number of tablets taken in an intentional overdose also increased across the time period, with the median number of tablets taken per overdose being 15 tablets in 2004, rising to 20 tablets in 2017.