Toxicology Service

South East Sydney Toxicology Service 0422 366 022

Prince of Wales has a dedicated group of clinical toxicologists who provide an inpatient service as well as consultations for hospitals within our local health district and the Sydney Children’s Hospital. Our department comprises three Clinical Toxicologists (Betty Chan, Angela Chiew and Therese Becker), a Fellow, and two registrar positions on six month rotations as a special skills post. We provide advice for approximately 1,000 presentations per annum. In addition to these duties, the unit has a strong focus on teaching and research: we have multiple clinical trials underway at the POWH campus, and all team members are heavily involved in medical education.

Our goal is to foster the development of a more considered and structured approach to poisoned patients, deepening knowledge and understanding, and keeping up to date with the latest research ideas and evidence. This encourages  our trainees to develop competence and confidence in managing simple toxicological emergencies independently. During their rotations, our registrars participate in the on-call roster and are routinely exposed to a wide variety of poisonings.

For those with a research interest there are ample opportunities for involvement. Current trials underway include

  • Post-Overdose Trail Test – evaluating persistence of cognitive impairment post overdose
  • NYXOID – feasibility and acceptability of take-home IN Naloxone to patients
  • SARPO – Prospective RCT of a shorter NAC regimen for paracetamol overdose
  • ATOM – ongoing multicentre ‘Australian Toxicological Monitoring’ Study on poisonings such as paracetamol, sodium channel blockers, dihydropyridine and anti-coagulant poisonings.

Initial resources for those interested in Toxicology include the eTG Toxicology and Wilderness available via CIAP. Dr Chiew has been directly involved in writing many of these guidelines.

There are also various short courses and formal study options available for those wishing to pursue formal learning on the topic – please see Dr Chan, Dr Chiew or Dr Becker for more information regarding this.