By Irene Choi, DVM
January 3, 2013
Here in the Puget Sound Region there are plenty of forests with thick layers of built-up decaying debris and in our climate of almost constant moisture in the spring and fall mushrooms can proliferate. Some mushrooms are a delicacy such as Truffles and Chanterelles and many people seek them out in the woods, however others can be poisonous. These poisonous mushrooms can appear in your yard growing below piles of leaves or under bushes where you won’t see them readily. There are many types of mushrooms and they can cause different types of symptoms that can start appearing within 30 minutes of ingestion up to 3-4 hours after ingestion. The most severe mushroom toxicity can cause liver, kidney, and heart disease and lead to death. Less severe mushroom poisonings can cause neurological symptoms such as seizures, tremors, hallucinations. Many toxic mushrooms can cause hypersalivation (drooling), miosis (pinpoint pupils), bradycardia (decreased heart rates), lacrimation (excessive tearing), vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and respiratory distress.