Aconite (wrestler)

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AconiteAconite from herbaceous plants of the dangerous buttercup family - too many of this "family" are poisonous. Therefore, it is unsafe to chew the blades of grass of representatives of the buttercup family from boredom, and there is no pleasure - it tastes bitter and burning. Perennial plants belong to the genus Aconite, which are recognized by the hand-cut leaves and flowers of an irregular helmet-like shape.

AconiteIn medicine, despite the poisonous properties, the Dzungarian and Karakol aconites are still allowed for use. The first species has purple flowers, the second has dirty purple flowers. Both are found on the slopes of the mountains in Central Asia. Their rhizomes are in the form of a chain of large tubers. On the mountain pastures of Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan), there is another tuber-bearing aconite species - round-leaved. He has lavender flowers, and the rhizomes are in the form of two rounded tubers.

The poisonous principle of aconites is predominantly the alkaloid aconitine. The lethal dose of aconitine for animals is 0.02-0.05 mg per kilogram of live weight, for humans - 3-4 mg per kilogram of weight. A. P. Chekhov, in his book "Sakhalin Island", vividly described as a doctor a case of human illness after eating a pig stuck with aconite. By the way, aconites (even their closest "relatives" - larkspur and hellebore) are poisonous for bees.

AconiteAconitine initially excites the central nervous system, especially the respiratory center. After excitement comes its oppression and paralysis, from respiratory paralysis and death occurs. The most poisonous part of the plant is the rhizome. Poisoning of animals with grass was noted in mountain pastures, as well as during grazing in public gardens (in Central Asia, this is not uncommon), where aconites are bred as ornamental plants. It happened that animals were poisoned when feeding silage containing aconites. There are cases of mass poisoning of sheep and some cases of cattle, mules, horses, goats.

The first signs of animal poisoning: "chomping" (unlike humans in animals - a rare phenomenon), salivation, foam formation at the mouth, groans (pain in the abdomen), gagging; often diarrhea, turning into constipation. Sometimes severe agitation and convulsions are noted.

AconiteIn the future, general weakness sets in: the animals lie, efforts to rise are unsuccessful; if the animal is still able to move, then its movements resemble a very tipsy person, dreaming of “bleeding” and sleeping. The pupils are greatly dilated, cardiac activity drops rapidly, shortness of breath develops. With progressive general weakness in acute cases, death occurs with symptoms of respiratory arrest.

The diagnosis of the death of an animal from aconite is easy to establish (at least in order to refrain from using meat for food). The material prepared by the extraction is dissolved on a glass in a drop of 1% sulfuric acid and mixed with a drop of 1% potassium permanganate. Within 10-15 minutes, a crystalline precipitate is formed from intergrowths of red-violet prisms.

AconiteIf the poisoning of a person is noticed in time, he can still be saved. First of all, tannin is given. The stomach is washed. At a later therapeutic intervention, a laxative is prescribed, and alcohol is prescribed as a life-stimulating agent. Ether is used to enhance the work of the heart, caffeine.

V. Sergeeva

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