Ecballium elaterium. A member of the plant family CUCURBITACEAE. Perennial
herbaceous plant with hairy, sappy stems, leaves with serrated edges and basal tendrils.
Yellow flowers with oblong fruit.
Animals most affected
Pigs, horses, cattle, poultry, cats.
Ingestion of the plant itself or the fruit.
Contains a heteroside, elaterine, which is a marked irritant. The entire plant is
Toxic oral doses not known.
Ingestion of a small or moderate amount
polyuria, sweating, nausea.
Ingestion of a large amount
motor incoordination, stupor, convulsions, opisthotonos;
exophthalmia, weak pulse, hypothermia and rapid onset of death.
haemorrhagic exudation in the kidney and along the gastrointestinal tract (haemorrhagic
syndrome in poultry).
No antidote. Symptomatic care only:
adsorbents (activated vegetable charcoal);