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Beeswax


Definition:

Beeswax is wax taken from the honeycomb of bees. Beeswax poisoning occurs when someone swallows beeswax.

This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual poison exposure. If you have an exposure, you should call your local emergency number (such as 911) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.

Poisonous Ingredient:

Beeswax

Where Found:
  • Beeswax
  • Some candles
Symptoms:

Beeswax is considered nonpoisonous, but it may cause a blockage in the intestines if a large amount is swallowed.

Home Treatment:

Do NOT make a person throw up unless told to do so by poison control or a health care professional.

Before Calling Emergency:

Determine the following information:

  • Patient's age, weight, and condition
  • Name of the product (ingredients and strengths, if known)
  • Time it was swallowed
  • Amount swallowed
Poison Control, or a local emergency number:

The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.

This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

See: Poison control center - emergency number

What to expect at the emergency room:

The health care provider will measure and monitor your vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure.

Symptoms will be treated as appropriate.

A laxative may be given to move the wax quickly through the gastrointestinal tract and prevent bowel blockage.

You may not need to be seen in the emergency room.

Expectations (prognosis):

How well you do depends on the amount of poison swallowed and how quickly treatment is received.

Since beeswax is considered relatively nontoxic, recovery is very likely.


Review Date: 2/16/2012
Reviewed By: Eric Perez, MD, St. Luke's / Roosevelt Hospital Center, NY, NY, and Pegasus Emergency Group (Meadowlands and Hunterdon Medical Centers), NJ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. Copyright 2002 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

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