Poisoning due to amatoxin-containing Lepiota species

Br J Clin Pract. 1990 Nov;44(11):450-3.


Twenty-seven consecutive mushroom poisoning cases were followed up over a period of 14 days. Fourteen out of 27 died of liver failure. There were no deaths from renal failure. The mushrooms were identified as the amatoxin-containing Lepiota species. Therapeutic measures included nasogastric lavage, charcoal, vitamin C, vitamin B, penicillin G, corticosteroids, oral streptomycin and, in the case of a few patients, limited amounts of thioctic acid. Of the ten haemodialysed, nine died. Unfortunately charcoal haemoperfusion was not available. It appeared that therapeutic measures were ineffective and it also seemed that the amount of mushroom ingested was the determining factor for the prognosis. An important point to make is that renal failure does not occur and liver failure is always delayed (group II). For this reason all suspected cases of mushroom poisoning, regardless of absence of clinical signs and symptoms, must be hospitalised for a period of at least one week. The poisonous properties of wild mushrooms have been recognized since ancient times. However, despite awareness of their inherent dangers, serious poisoning continues to occur. Fatal intoxications can be attributed almost entirely to the amtoxin-containing species. Amanita phalloides have been blamed for over 90% of poisoning deaths in North America. There are reports of intoxications of other amatoxin-containing species in Europe, but fatalities due to Lepiota species are reported only rarely. It was previously acknowledged that the interval between ingestion of mushrooms and the onset of symptoms is longer than expected in serious poisonings.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Amanitins / poisoning*
  • Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury
  • Child
  • Coma / chemically induced
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mushroom Poisoning* / mortality
  • Mushroom Poisoning* / therapy
  • Prognosis
  • Renal Dialysis
  • Thioctic Acid / therapeutic use
  • Time Factors


  • Amanitins
  • amatoxin
  • Thioctic Acid