[Honey-induced poisoning]

Schweiz Rundsch Med Prax. 1992 Apr 21;81(17):535-40.
[Article in German]


Because of the increasing preference for natural products intoxications induced by consumption of honey will reappear, especially with products bought directly from the beekeeper. In the hospital of Trapezunt about 8 cases of intoxications induced by honey were reported per year. The courses observed appear to be identical to those already described by Xenophon 2400 years ago. Symptoms begin acutely but last rarely for more than 24 hours. Fatal cases are extremely rare. Most prominent symptoms are loss of consciousness, weakness, severe salivation, sweating, vomiting and diarrhea. Beside these symptoms circumoral paresthesias and bradyarrhythmia may occur. Intoxication is induced by certain diterpenes, so called gray-anotoxins, that appear in flowers of different species of rhododendron. Next to close surveillance only symptomatic therapy is generally necessary.

Publication types

  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Diterpenes / poisoning*
  • Greece
  • History, 18th Century
  • History, Ancient
  • Honey / poisoning*
  • Humans
  • Plants, Toxic*
  • Poisoning / history
  • Toxins, Biological / poisoning*
  • United States


  • Diterpenes
  • Toxins, Biological
  • grayanotoxin I