Introduction

Salicylates can cause severe poisoning with relatively few symptoms, so that every case of ingestion must be taken seriously. Deaths occur because of a lack of understanding of the complexity and severity of salicylate overdose. Salicylates are found in aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid), benorylate, methyl salicylate (oil of wintergreen) which is used in liniments, choline salicylate which is included in some teething gels, and salicylic acid which has keratolytic properties. Teething gels rarely cause severe poisoning because the amount of salicylate contained is small. Aspirin comes as tablets or capsules (75-500 mg), sometimes in combination with other analgesics or decongestants.

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