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Welcome to IU Medical Toxicology: from Kris Nañagas, MD

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Happy New Year from IU Medical Toxicology! As the year has come, it’s time to introduce or re-introduce ourselves.

What is the Medical Toxicology Service?
The Med Tox Service provides medical backup for the Indiana Poison Center and consults at the bedside at IUH Methodist, Riley, University and Eskenazi. When you call the poison center, you will get recommendations from one of our highly skilled nurses/pharmacists regarding the workup and treatment of any patient suspected of a toxicologic exposure. Additionally, you may want to speak to the toxicologist on call if the case is complex or you need further guidance.

Fun Tox Fact:  If you call the national poison center number (1-800-222-1222), you will be routed to the poison center associated with the area code on the phone you are using, not your actual location. If you have a phone number with an out of state area code, you will not be directed to the Indiana Poison Center, you will be sent to your state’s poison center.

If you have a patient that is going to get admitted with a toxicologic issue at any of our hospitals, we would love a phone call from you (317-962-2323 or 1-800-222-1222) (even if you personally don’t need guidance for the care of that patient).  We have made a commitment to our inpatient hospitalist and critical care colleagues that we will see all admitted patients with tox issues, and prefer to be involved earlier in their care than later, as this is when we make the biggest impact on their clinical course.  It can be as easy as giving the Poison Center a name and MRN if you have no time for a discussion. Also, we can get calls from nurses, secretaries, students, anyone involved in a patient’s care, just ask them to give us a heads up. One additional favor to ask of our EZ friends, it would be ever so helpful if you remember to put in an order for a tox consult. We know it is not value added for you to do this, but it is easier for us to enter a note this way.

Fun Tox Fact: Since 1983, there has been a certification test for personnel working in poison centers administered by the American Association of Poison Control Centers. These personnel were initially called poison information specialists, but as “PIS” was an abbreviation that worked better on paper than as the spoken word, the name was changed to “specialists in poison information,” or “SPI”.  So, when you talk to a toxicologist and we say “my SPI told me you have a patient”, this does not mean that you are subject to creepy surveillance during the normal course of your work, but that the poison center has been made aware of the patient.

Who is on the Medical Toxicology Service?

There are six faculty physicians on the Medical Toxicology Service and we are the only location in Indiana with board certified medical toxicologists, and bedside tox services.

Fun Tox Fact:  Our service was founded by Brent Furbee, MD and has been serving poisoned patients in Indiana since 1992.



Mary Wermuth, MD (with her son William)

Medical Director of the Toxicology Service

Methodist ED Physician




Louise Kao, MD

Medical Toxicology Fellowship Director

Methodist ED Physician



Kris Nañagas, MD

Division Chief of Medical Toxicology

Methodist ED Physician



Blake Froberg, MD

Medical Director of  Indiana Poison Center

Riley Pediatric Hospitalist



Jen Acciani, MD

Director of the Medical Toxicology Student Rotation

Eskenazi ED Physician



Laura Tormoehlen, MD

Director of Adult Neurologic Services

Methodist Clinical



Bob Avera, MD

Toxicology Fellow

Methodist ED Physician




Bryan Ross, MD

Toxicology Fellow

Methodist ED Physician




Marshall Haynick, PharmD

Clinical Pharmacy Toxicology Fellow



Adam Overberg, PharmD

Clinical Pharmacy Toxicology Fellowship Director



Fun Tox Fact:  An unusual number of famous toxicologists are named Louis/Lewis/Louise: Louis Gdalman, Lewis Goldfrank, Louis Ling, Lewis Nelson, Louis Casarett, Louis Goodman, and Louise Kao.  It was a dream of mine to have a son and name him Louis. My son’s name is Kyle. My husband is not as impressed by famous toxicologists as I am.