A middle-age woman presents to the Emergency Department with altered mental status after having ingested a drug. Is it an opioid? Is it an antihistamine?

The key is to pay close attention to the vital signs. They are often the clue to the mystery. I found this great table from EM Clinics of North America by Dr. Timothy Erickson from 2007. I can’t imagine how long it took for him to create all these mnemonics. I’ll never remember these mnemonics, but they’re fun to read nonetheless.

PV Card: Toxidromes by Vital Signs


Go to the ALiEM Cards site for more resources.

Michelle Lin, MD
ALiEM Founder and CEO
Professor and Digital Innovation Lab Director
Department of Emergency Medicine
University of California, San Francisco
Michelle Lin, MD

@M_Lin

Professor of Emerg Med at UCSF-Zuckerberg San Francisco General. Founder of ALiEM @aliemteam #PostitPearls https://t.co/7v7cgJqNEn
Michelle Lin, MD