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Suspected superwarfarin poisoning case under CHP investigation

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health is today (February 6) investigating a case of suspected superwarfarin poisoning involving an 81-year-old man.

     The man, with chronic illnesses, presented with gum bleeding on January 12. He attended the Accident and Emergency Department of Prince of Wales Hospital the following day (January 13) and was admitted on January 14. His blood sample showed abnormal clotting and his serum sample showed a significant level of bromadiolone, a common rodenticide against rats, upon laboratory testing by the Hospital Authority.

     The clinical diagnosis was suspected superwarfarin poisoning. The patient remained in stable condition and was discharged on January 22.
     Officers of the CHP and the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department took food remnants from the patient's home for further investigation. Laboratory testing done by the Government Laboratory confirmed the presence of bromadiolone in dried duck leg. A preliminary investigation so far revealed that the patient had purchased the dried duck leg from a retail shop in Sha Tin in early December 2012.

     No similar cases have been reported so far. The CHP's investigation is proceeding.

     Warfarin and superwarfarin are anticoagulants, commonly know as blood thinners, which affect the blood clotting mechanism. The most common side effect is abnormal bleeding. Members of the public should seek medical advice immediately if any unusual bleeding or symptoms develop.

Ends/Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Issued at HKT 18:25


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