Natural Order : Loganaceae
Strychnine and Brucine
IP products – used as wormin paste.
- Homicidal: Used as arrow poison
- Strychnine: 50-100 mg
- Seed: 1 crashed seed
Fatal Period : 1-2 hours
Signs and Symptoms
- Bitter taste with choking in throat.
- Stiffness of neck, face and twitching of muscles.
- Causes convulsions: Clonic first and then tonic and longer paroxysms (face becomes cyanosed with anxious look eyes scary, eyeballs, prominent and pupils dilated); Risus sardonicus.
- Mental faculties are not affected.
- Reflex excitability high with symmetrical extensor thrust.
- Death is from medullary paralysis.
- No specific antidote.
- Move patient to dark room.
- Anesthetized by barbiturate.
Differences between Strychnine and Tetanus
|Onset||Sudden; no history of injury but history of ingestion of bitter object.||Gradual, with history of injury|
|Muscle involvement||All muscles at a time.||Muscles of neck and lower jaw affected first and spreads further.|
|Muscle relaxation||During interval muscles are relaxed.||During interval muscles are rigid.|
|Fatal period||Death occurs within few hours. If patient survives for 6 hours probability of survival is great.||Death takes place within few hours.|
|Chemical analysis||Detected||No poison detected but Clostridium tetani is detected.|
Reference: A Handbook of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology by Dr Madona Joseph & Dr Harpreet Kaur