A 67-year-old man in Australia developed cyanide poisoning from the apricot kernel. According to the reports, in 2015, when he was under anesthetic, the doctors noticed that his red blood cells had low levels of oxygen and they appointed him for routine surgery. Then Blood tests discovered that he had a high level of cyanide in his blood.
He told doctors that he consumed two teaspoons of the extract and three Novodalin tablets, and an herbal fruit supplement daily for five years. That reached to around 17.23 milligrams of apricot kernel extract a day. The man was in remission from prostate cancer and was trying to stop it from reoccurring.
The researchers said that the seeds contain an amygdalin substance, a chemical compound by which the body turns into cyanide. The Amygdalin substance also called as laetrile, when it enters the body it is transformed into cyanide and then blocks the oxygen for cells.
Luckily, doctors detected the cyanide in his body because there were not any symptoms presented and he visited the hospital for just routine surgery of his prostate cancer. Doctors suggested the man to discontinue consuming the kernels. Apricot kernel extract is known as a complementary medicine and preventative medicine for cancer.
Vomiting, headaches, breath shortness, seizures, dizziness, loss of consciousness, cardiac arrest and death are the symptoms of severe cyanide poisoning. In long-term exposure, like the Australian patient can lead to lesions, weakness, nerve damage, paralysis, and may affect liver and kidney.