Four hundred and seventy-two cases of poisoning were seen over a two-year period in Kandy, Ceylon. The overall mortality was 23·7%. The pattern of poisoning was different from that in western countries in that 49·8% of the cases were due to insecticide poisoning and only 10·7% were due to drugs, including barbiturates. Insecticides accounted for 73·2% and drugs for only 4·5% of the 112 fatal cases. Of the fatal cases 51·7% were between the ages of 20 and 40 years and only 6·2% were over 50 years. The wastage of economically useful lives indicates the need for a poison centre.
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