Health officials are warning members of the public to be careful in selecting mushrooms for consumption during the rainy season when some poisonous types may more easily be found.
Director-General of the Department of Medical Sciences at the Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Apichai Mongkol said that, during the rainy season which lasts from May to November, there is often a rise in the number of cases of illness and death caused by the consumption of poisonous mushrooms, particularly in the North and the Northeast of Thailand.
Dr. Apichai said that the problem could be attributed to the lack of accurate knowledge about how to test if certain mushrooms are safe for consumption, when there is such a wide variety of mushrooms in Thailand including poisonous ones that can cause dizziness, nausea, vomiting or even death.
He added that people who have consumed poisonous fungi must be forced to vomit as much as possible to reduce the spread of poison and quickly be sent to the nearest hospital along with an example of the mushrooms eaten.
Dr. Apichai said that the Department of Medical Sciences has developed an effective test to identify all types of mushrooms, even those which have never been recorded, and hopes to introduce a test kit for public distribution in the near future.