Toxicology Purpose

Samples taken from blood, urine, vomitus or gastric lavage (depending on drug or poison ingested) for:

• Monitoring of therapeutic drug levels (usually plasma) and avoidance of toxicity, e.g. digoxin, aminoglycosides, lithium, phenytoin

• Identification of unknown toxic substances (e.g. cyanide, amphetamines, opiates) causing symptomatology and/or pathology. Always take a urine sample for analysis.

• Confirmation of toxic plasma levels and monitoring of treatment effect, e.g. paracetamol, aspirin

• Medicolegal, e.g. alcohol, recreational drugs following road trauma

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