Dieffenbachia poisoning | University of Maryland Medical Center

Dieffenbachia (lottery or amoena) is a type of home-grown plant with large, colorful leaves. Poisoning can occur if you eat the leaves, stem or root of this plant.

This is for informational purposes only and not for use in the treatment or management of a real toxic exposure. If you suffer from an exposure, you should call the local emergency number (such as 911 in the United States) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.

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Alternative Names

Leopard lice poisoning; Poison root poisoning; Poisoning of the mouth and throat

inflammation and blisters on the tongue or mouth

The blisters and swelling of the mouth can be so severe that they can not talk and swallow normally.

Home Care

Wipe your mouth with a cloth humid and cold. Rinse thoroughly the eyes and skin of the person if they had contact with the plant. Give him milk. Call the Poison Center for further guidance.

Before Calling Emergencies

Determine the following information:

  • The parts of the plant that were ingested
  • Time when it was ingested
  • Quantity ingested The National Poison Control Center can be reached at 1-800-222-1222 from any part of the United States.

Toxicology Center

United. This toll-free national line will allow you to speak to poisoning experts, who will give you additional instructions.

If possible, take the plant to the hospital.

See: Toxicology Center emergency number

the emergency room

The doctor will measure and monitor the patient's vital signs, including temperature, pulse, respiratory rate and blood pressure. The symptoms will be treated in the appropriate way. The patient can receive intravenous (IV) fluids and respiratory support.

Expectations (prognosis)

If the patient's mouth contact is not severe, symptoms will usually resolve within a few days. For patients who actually have serious contact with the plant, a longer recovery time may be necessary.


Do not touch or eat any plant with which you are not familiar. Wash your hands after working in the garden or walking in the woods.


Hostetler MA, Schneider SM. Poisonous plants. In: Tintinalli JE, Kelen GD, Stapczynski JS, Ma OJ, Cline DM, eds. Emergency Medicine: A Comprehensive Study Guide . 6th ed. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; 2004: chap 205.

Shofner JD, Kimball AB. Plant-induced dermatitis. In: Auerbach PS, ed. Wilderness Medicine . 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2011: chap 63.

Graeme, KA. Toxic plant ingestions. In: Auerbach PS, ed. Wilderness Medicine . 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; Jacob L. Heller, MD, author of the book, and the book " MHA, Emergency Medicine, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Ogilvie Island, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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