Experts warn about eating honey made from the pollen of rhododendrons, which can trigger heart arrhythmias.
Mad honey poisoning case
Cardiologists told a European conference about the unusual situations of what is known as “mad honey poisoning” in two patients they had treated. The father and son from Turkey experienced heart-related symptoms after they ate honey from the Black Sea region. Although the case is rare, experts say people should be aware of the possible risk caused by this type of honey.
Honey contaminated with grayanotoxin
Mad honey poisoning happens after eating honey contaminated with grayanotoxin, which is a chemical contained in nectar from the species known as Rhododendron ponticum and luteum. Grayanotoxin gets in the way of chemical messages in the body, in this case it targets the heart.
Both father and son were brought to Izmir emergency department, as they experiencedsymptoms of dizziness and vomiting. The ECG’s heart traces showed they had potentially fatal heart rhythm disturbances.
According to Dr.Ugur Turk, who treated them, the wide distribution of honey all over the world meant that doctors anywhere could potentially be faced with patients diagnosed with honey poisoning, although the case is rare.