UMass Chan Medical School Faculty Publications


Sex Differences in Pediatric Poisonings by Age Group: a Toxicology Investigators' Consortium (ToxIC) Analysis (2010-2016)

UMMS Affiliation

Division of Medical Toxicology, Department of Emergency Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Emergency Medicine | Medical Toxicology | Pediatrics


OBJECTIVE: To review pediatric poisonings evaluated at the bedside by medical toxicologists and reported in the ToxIC registry, by sex and age group.

METHODS: Pediatric poisoning cases age < /=18 years, reported between January 2010 and December 2016, were reviewed. Descriptive statistics were used to describe study variables by age group and sex.

RESULTS: A total of 12,699 cases were analyzed. There were 7517 females and 5182 males. Those < 2 years old represented 12.5% of the study group (n = 1584), 17.2% were 2-6 years old (n = 2178), 8.6% were 7-12 years old (n = 1097), and 61.7% were 13-18 years old (n = 7840). The most common primary reasons for encounter were intentional pharmaceutical with 4900 females and 1836 males; intentional non-pharmaceutical with 952 females and 1213 males; unintentional pharmaceutical with 539 females and 644 males; and unintentional non-pharmaceutical with 435 females and 593 males. Overall, pharmaceuticals were the most commonly involved agents, including analgesics (20.9% of cases) and antidepressants (11% of cases): 27.8% of females and 10.7% of males were reportedly exposed to an analgesic.13.7% of females and 7.0% of males were reportedly exposed to an antidepressant. Among 1584 cases under 2 years, there were 747 females and 837 males; among 2178 cases aged 2-6 years, there were 954 females and 1224 males; among 1097 cases aged 7-12 years, there were 555 females and 542 males; and among 7840 cases aged 13-18 years, there were 5261 females and 2579 males. Death was reported in 0.7% of the cases: 20 females and 18 males. 6.1% of cases were managed with intubation: 421 females and 351 males.

CONCLUSIONS: Sex-based characteristics of poisonings varied by age group among pediatric poisoning presentations reported to the ToxIC registry and further research is needed to determine implications for education and prevention efforts.


Medical toxicology, Pediatrics, Poisonings, Sex differences

DOI of Published Version



Beauchamp GA, Carey JL, Cook MD, Cannon RD, Katz KD, Yoon J, Kincaid H, Ely BJ, Pollack E, Mazzaccaro RJ, Greenberg MR; Toxicology Investigators Consortium (ToxIC). Sex Differences in Pediatric Poisonings by Age Group: a Toxicology Investigators' Consortium (ToxIC) Analysis (2010-2016). J Med Toxicol. 2020 Oct;16(4):423-443. doi: 10.1007/s13181-020-00781-9. Epub 2020 Jun 2. PMID: 32488629; PMCID: PMC7554275. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of medical toxicology : official journal of the American College of Medical Toxicology

PubMed ID