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Investigation of Aspirin Overdose Using Salicylate Assay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Biology
Wordcount: 902 words Published: 5th Jun 2018

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Aspirin is the most widely used over-the-counter drug in the world. The average tablet contains about 325 milligrams of acetylsalicylic. Aspirin is used to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and lower fever. Aspirin originally was derived by boiling the bark of the white willow tree. Although the salicin in willow bark has palliative properties, purified salicylic acid was bitter and irritating when taken orally. Phenylsalicylate could be produced by modifying Salicylic acid which resulted in better tasting and less irritating outcomes. Felix Hoffman and Arthur Eichengrün first produced the active ingredient in aspirin, acetylsalicylic acid, in 1893. However, Hippocrates wrote about a bitter powder extracted from willow bark that could ease aches and pains and reduce fevers during the fifth century B.C

200 ml well mixed stomach contents (Sample A)- Transparent Yellow

200 ml hydrolysed stomach contents (Sample B)- Purple

200 ml urine (Sample D)- Light Purple

200 ml negative control (water)- Transparent Yellow

200 ml positive control (400 mg /ml sodium salicylate)- Purple

Solution i and iv which where stomach content and negative control turned Transparent Yellow this means, No change, Negative test. Solutions ii and v turned purple which means that the test where portative for high aspirin traces.

Solution iii turned Light Purple which means that slight trances of aspirin are shown the sample.

Salicylic acid is a weak acid, and very little as it’s ionized in the stomach after oral consumption. Acetylsalicylic acid is poorly soluble in the acidic conditions of the stomach, which can setback amalgamation of high doses for 8 to 24 hours.

In addition to the increased pH of the small intestine, aspirin is rapidly absorbed due to the increased surface area, which results in allowing more of the salicylate to dissolve. However, aspirin is absorbed much more slowly during overdose, and plasma concentrations can continue to rise for up to 24 hours after ingestion.

As much as 80% of therapeutic doses of salicylic acid are metabolized in the liver.

Renal excretion of salicylic acid becomes ever more important as the metabolic pathways become saturated, because it is extremely responsive to changes in urinary pH. There is a 10 to 20 fold increase in renal clearance when urine pH is increased from 5 to 8. The use of urinary alkalinization utilizes this particular aspect of salicylate elimination.

From the deductions that can be from by results and investigations, it shows that aspirin is absorbed via the small intestine, which then transported to the blood serum. Waste product is transported to urea and disposed via renal excretion. Therefore more aspirin is present in the serum, that why forms a precipitate and the urine dose not as much of it is waste product.

The acutely toxic dose of aspirin is commonly regard as greater than 150 mg per kg of body mass. Moderate toxicity occurs at doses up to 300 mg/kg, severe toxicity occurs between 300 to 500 mg/kg, and a potentially lethal dose is greater than 500 mg/kg. Chronic toxicity may arise subsequently to doses of 100 mg/kg per day for two or more days.

Around 3 grams per day in divided doses for rheumatoid arthritis is recommended.

Serum salicylate levels may be useful in guiding therapeutic decisions regarding dosage. Serum salicylate levels of 150 to 300 mcg/mL are associated with anti-inflammatory response. However, the incidence of toxicity increases with salicylate levels greater than 200 mcg/mL.

This patients salicylate concentration level levels where 400 mcg/mL. Therefore I believe this person was overdosing on aspirin.

The key objectionable side effects of aspirin are tinnitus, gastrointestinal ulcers and stomach bleeding contestably in higher doses; this is due to aspirin irritating the stomach lining. In youngsters, aspirin is no longer used to control flu-like symptoms or the symptoms of other viral illnesses, because of the risk of Reye’s syndrome. Another common side effect of aspirin is heart burn, this can occur at low doses.

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Aspirin was once used as an anti-inflammatory drug as well as a pain killer. This results in the medication working as a block pain. For example, when a person has a headache, it is often the result in restriction in the blood vessels of the brain. Aspirin reduces the swelling and also thins down the blood to help with blood flow through the vessels; this help in reducing pain and prevention of recurring when the painkiller properties of aspirin wear off. Aspirin is also effective in reducing fevers. People who have a history of heart problems and those at risk of heart attacks are often advised by doctors to take daily doses of aspirin as a preventative measure.

The blood thinning properties of aspirin can save a life in the event of a heart emergency by helping some blood to pass through the body until a clot or blockage can be treated. Aspirin is also a known anti-coagulant, which means that it helps to keep the blood thin and prevents clotting. Anti-coagulant is used to prevent blood clots forming within the blood vessels; this can cause heart attack, stroke or other circulatory system problems.


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