Lithium toxicity

Lithobid toxicity

Lithium is a prescription medicine used to treat bipolar disorder. This article focuses on lithium overdose, or toxicity.

  • Acute toxicity occurs when you swallow too much of a lithium prescription at one time.
  • Chronic toxicity occurs when you slowly take a little too much of a lithium prescription every day for a while. This is actually quite easy to do, because dehydration, other medicines, and other conditions can easily affect how your body handles lithium. These factors can make the lithium build up to harmful levels in your body.
  • Acute on chronic toxicity occurs when you normally take lithium every day for bipolar disorder, but one day you take an extra amount. This can be as little as a couple of pills or as much as a whole bottle.

Lithium is a medicine with a narrow range of safety. Significant poisoning can result when the amount of lithium taken is more than this range.

This article is for information only. DO NOT use it to treat or manage an actual poison exposure. If you or someone you are with has an exposure, call your local emergency number (such as 911), or your local poison center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States.

Poisonous Ingredient

Where Found

Symptoms

Before Calling Emergency

Poison Control

What to Expect at the Emergency Room

Outlook (Prognosis)