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Dr. Andrew Rynne
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Suggest Treatment For Overdose Of Cocaine

Hi I was wondering the treatment time differences between alcohol poisoning treatment and treatment for cocaine overdose. Do hospitals keep you overnight for observation after alcohol poisoning? What is the process of treatment for that of a cocaine overdose? And would they keep you overnight?
Mon, 3 Jul 2017
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Addiction Medicine Specialist 's  Response
These are just hypotheticals. In overdoses the person has to immediately get to the hospital. Alcohol poisoning might benefit from charcoal. one could even do hemodialysis. Mainly it is making sure the person keeps breathing even if they have to be on a respiratory and maintaining blood pressure until it wears off. It should not be fatal if the person is alive to begin with.

Cocaine poisoning is more tricky. There can be fatal cardiac arrhtythmias which are notoriously difficult to treat. Bicarbonate intravenously used to be considered the antidote for cocaine poisoning, but that was a bit overly optimistic. Mainly treating arrhythmias, but since one of the main drugs to do that (LIDOCAINE) is very similar to cocaine with overlapping properties, and since beta blockers can cause increases in vasoconstriction with cocaine, it gets .. tricky.
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Suggest Treatment For Overdose Of Cocaine

These are just hypotheticals. In overdoses the person has to immediately get to the hospital. Alcohol poisoning might benefit from charcoal. one could even do hemodialysis. Mainly it is making sure the person keeps breathing even if they have to be on a respiratory and maintaining blood pressure until it wears off. It should not be fatal if the person is alive to begin with. Cocaine poisoning is more tricky. There can be fatal cardiac arrhtythmias which are notoriously difficult to treat. Bicarbonate intravenously used to be considered the antidote for cocaine poisoning, but that was a bit overly optimistic. Mainly treating arrhythmias, but since one of the main drugs to do that (LIDOCAINE) is very similar to cocaine with overlapping properties, and since beta blockers can cause increases in vasoconstriction with cocaine, it gets .. tricky.