The main ingredient in rat poison is warfarin, which is an anticoagulant. In simple terms, it retards or prevents blood clotting. It contains a blood-thinner compound, which can prove to be lethal. Many times, there are no symptoms, like nosebleeds, bleeding gums, fatigue, etc., which are usually seen for several days. It is now seen that many species of rats have become immune to the poison that has been traditionally produced. At the same time, it has been observed, that although human beings can fall victims to it, raccoons are immune. In this article, you will find some rat poison side effects.
- The most important side effect is the internal bleeding that is caused in the body. This has its effects on the clotting of blood and causes it to thin abnormally. Internal bleeding is hence induced, and it finds its way out in the form of nose or gum bleeds, bloody urine, or bloody stools.
- Since the blood thins as an effect of warfarin, the direct effect is dizziness. In some cases, dizziness can become so severe that it may become very difficult for the person to even stand.
- It also affects the digestive system. It can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. Majority of times, the vomit and diarrhea may have blood in them due to the blood-thinning effect.
- Thinning of the blood also can cause lethargy. The person may feel very sleepy and drowsy, as the thinned blood makes its way through the body.
- If a high dosage is consumed, it can result in death. Hemorrhage and heart complications are the most common complications that eventually lead to death.
If a pet swallows this poison, there are antidotes that need to be administered to the pet. However, in spite of the antidote, it is advisable to induce vomiting in your pet, using hydrogen peroxide. Since the poison contains anticoagulants, it stops the body from producing blood-clotting proteins. Vitamin K counteracts this condition, and it is hence, used as an antidote. However, you will have to administer the antidote in high dosage to your pet for an extended period. The minimum period is of three weeks.
In the case of humans, the antidote, vitamin K, should be administered well in time and before it causes harm to the circulatory system of the person. Since the antidote has to be given in high quantities, the side effects of it can be seen for months after it was administered. It may be even required to administer the antidote for a long period of time, under strict monitoring of the physicians.
If the health care professional notices unabsorbed poison in the digestive system, activated charcoal may be used. In case of emergency, activated charcoal or the syrup of ipecac may be given to the patient. However, I would advise that it be given only on the advise of a poison control professional. It is recommended to also give vitamin C to the patient, to help cope with the effects of the antidote.
Many people are prescribed drugs that contain warfarin, if they suffer from deep vein thrombosis, heart related ailments, etc. Even then, a lot of people complain of many other effects of using these blood-thinning drugs. In such a case, you may need to talk to your health care professional. If a human being has consumed large amount of this poison, it is vital that you contact the poison control hotline without wasting any time.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.