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Journal Article

Citation

Simmons SC, Taylor LJ, Marques MB, Williams LA. Lab. Med. 2018; 49(3): 272-275.

Affiliation

Division of Laboratory Medicine, Department of Pathology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2018, Lippincott Williams and Wilkins)

DOI

10.1093/labmed/lmx093

PMID

29365146

Abstract

Rat poisoning should be considered in the differential diagnosis of a patient presenting with signs and symptoms of vitamin K deficiency without a more likely explanation. However, confirming this diagnosis may be difficult due to the varying sensitivities of available assays. A 40-year-old Caucasian woman presented to our hospital with chronic abdominal pain, hematuria, and a history of diarrhea of unknown etiology, despite an extensive work-up. Her laboratory evaluation results were consistent with vitamin K deficiency. Because she reported that she had not ingested warfarin, rat poisoning was suspected; however, the results of the first assay were negative. A second specimen was sent to another reference laboratory with a more sensitive assay, and the diagnosis of brodifacoum poisoning was confirmed. The patient was treated with oral vitamin K. If a patient presents with unexplained signs and symptoms of vitamin K deficiency, toxicological evaluation should be performed and repeat testing may be warranted, depending on the sensitivity of the original testing method.

© American Society for Clinical Pathology 2018. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.


Language: en

Keywords

brodifacoum; ingestion; overdose; rat poison; supratherapeutic INR; vitamin K deficiency

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