FATAL AND NON-FATAL ACUTE POISONING ATTRIBUTED TO CASSAVA-BASED MEAL
Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is the most important energy-giving food in the tropics. However, several cases of acute poisoning, some leading to death, following consumption of a cassava-based meal have been reported in Nigerian cities since 1989. Eight patients died shortly after admission to the Emergency Unit of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital after eating a cassava-based meal of the grated and fried product, 'gari'. The patients vomited and complained of abdominal pain immediately after the meal. They became comatose with acute renal failure and died of cardio-pulmonary arrest. Several minor acute intoxications were also seen, with complaints of nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and headache following a meal of cassava. These observations suggest that the factor responsible for cassava- induced toxicity is cyanide exposure and that variation in individual susceptibility to cyanide may explain its haphazard occurrence.
Akintonwa, A., Tunwashe, O. and Onifade, A. (1994). FATAL AND NON-FATAL ACUTE POISONING ATTRIBUTED TO CASSAVA-BASED MEAL. Acta Hortic. 375, 285-288
Cyanogenic glucosides, cyanide, toxicity, blood, urine