Campho-Phenique is an over-the-counter medicine used to treat cold sores and insect bites.
Campho-Phenique overdose occurs when someone takes more than the normal or recommended amount of this medicine. This can be by accident or on purpose. Inhaling a large amount of Campho-Phenique fumes may also cause symptoms.
This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual overdose. DO NOT use it to treat or manage an actual overdose. If you or someone you are with overdoses, call your local emergency number (such as 911), or your local poison center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States.
Campho-Phenique contains both camphor and phenol.
For information on products containing camphor alone, see camphor overdose.
Both camphor and phenol are in Campho-Phenique. However, camphor and phenol may be found separately in other products.
Below are symptoms of a Campho-Phenique overdose in different parts of the body.
AIRWAYS AND LUNGS
BLADDER AND KIDNEYS
EYES, EARS, NOSE, AND THROAT
HEART AND BLOOD VESSELS
STOMACH AND INTESTINES
Seek medical help right away. DO NOT make the person throw up unless poison control or a health care provider tells you to.
Have this information ready:
Your local poison center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.
This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Take the container with you to the hospital, if possible.
The provider will measure and monitor the person's vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated.
The person may receive:
Treatment may include:
Survival past 48 hours often means the person will recover. Seizures and irregular heartbeat may start suddenly, within minutes of exposure.
Keep all medicines in child-proof containers and out of the reach of children.
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Wang GS, Buchanan JA. Hydrocarbons. In: Walls RM, Hockberger RS, Gausche-Hill M, eds. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 152.