Medical Toxicology Resident Education

Emergency Medicine residents are scheduled for this rotation during their 1st year at the West Texas Regional Poison Center (WTRPC), performing bedside consultations at University Medical Center of El Paso (UMC) and El Paso Children's Hospital (EPCH). 1st and 3rd year pediatrics residents perform shorter rotations with the division. Residents are exposed to the fields of medical toxicology and pediatric environmental health. A one hour orientation with the WTRPC director is required to familiarize the resident with the functioning of the poison center and includes instructions for operating the computerized Poisindex system. Residents are on call for 15 days.

Residents learn the pertinent aspects of the history and physical exam relative to acute poisoning with particular emphasis on clinical recognition of major toxic syndromes (toxidromes); learn the presenting signs, symptoms, laboratory findings, pathophysiology and treatment of common therapeutic drug poisonings, drugs of abuse, natural toxins, and general household poisons as delineated in the core curriculum of emergency medicine; learn the common hazardous materials (HAZMAT) of the workplace and pre-hospital operations with regard to HAZMAT incidents. These are just a few of many learning experiences offered.

The resident is expected to prepare a brief PowerPoint presentation on a toxicological subject of current concern or on a patient seen in the emergency department during the month of the rotation. EM residents are also required to present a general medical toxicology overview to the medical students.

For more information regarding the Medical Toxicology Resident Rotation, please contact Dr. Stephen W. Borron, division chief, Division of Medical Toxicology, and professor of emergency medicine and medical toxicology at