Calling the Poison Control Center
What We Need to Know to Help You
When you call CHOP’s Poison Center, our specialists will ask you a series of questions. These questions and your answers will allow us to give you the most accurate information in order to help whoever was poisoned.
Questions we’ll ask
- What is your name and the name of the person who was poisoned?
- What is the phone number where someone from the Poison Control Center can reach you for follow-up?
- What is the age and weight of the person who was poisoned?
- Do you know any information about the person’s medical history that would be important for us to know?
- What product, medication or poison was the person exposed to?
o When possible, have the product/medication at the phone with you when calling the Poison Control Center.
o The specialist may need to confirm ingredients with you since there are many products or medications that have similar names but different ingredients.
- At what time did the exposure or ingestion occur?
- How does the person look now?
- Describe any physical symptoms the person may be experiencing.
- Detail the events surrounding the exposure:
o How long was the person in contact with the poisonous substance?
o Was it swallowed, inhaled, absorbed through skin contact, or splashed into the eye?
o How much could he/she have ingested, was anything done for the person before the Poison Control Center was called?
o How did the exposure happen?
Tips to remember before treatment
If medicine has been swallowed, do not give anything by mouth until advised by the Poison Control Center.
If chemicals or household products have been swallowed, offer a small amount of water to the person, then call for professional advice.
** Never make someone vomit unless advised to do so by a professional.
Please be assured that ALL information is confidential and used only to keep track of you or your child's progress during the exposure.
Learn more about treatment for poisons and tips to prevent exposure.
Reviewed by: The Poison Control Center
Date: October 2013