Indian Journal of Critical Care Case Report

Register      Login

VOLUME 2 , ISSUE 1 ( January-February, 2023 ) > List of Articles


Toxic Gastroenteritis after Bottle Gourd Ingestion: A Case Series of Seven Patients

Suvadeep Sen, Deepak Gupta

Keywords : Bitter bottle gourd, Bottle gourd juice, Cucurbitacin poisoning, Toxic enteritis

Citation Information : Sen S, Gupta D. Toxic Gastroenteritis after Bottle Gourd Ingestion: A Case Series of Seven Patients. 2023; 2 (1):25-27.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-11006-0031

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 07-03-2023

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2023; The Author(s).


Introduction: In India, bottle gourd is consumed as a juice due to various health advantages. Bottle gourd and vegetables from the same family contain trace amounts of cucurbitacins which impart a bitter taste to these vegetables. Increase in the levels of these compounds due to various reasons can lead to serious gastrointestinal side effects along with multiorgan dysfunction. Discussion: Here we present a case series of seven patients which presented to us with significant health issues after consuming bitter bottle gourd juice and the manner in which they were treated. All seven patients made remarkable recoveries. Conclusion: Though a popularly consumed vegetable throughout India for various health benefits, it could pose a serious health risk if consumed when bitter and the above issue requires extensive research and education regarding the toxicity of the substance. Prompt identification and simple resuscitation efforts can prevent significant mortality and morbidity.

  1. Khatib KI, Borawake KS. Bottle gourd (Lagenaria siceraria) toxicity: a “bitter” diagnostic dilemma. J Clin Diagn Res 2014;8(12):MD05–MD07. DOI: 10.7860/JCDR/2014/10826.5324
  2. Deshpande JR, Choudhari AA, Mishra MR, et al. Beneficial effects of Lagenaria siceraria (Mol.) Standley fruit epicarp in animal models. Indian J Exp Biol 2008;46(4):234–242.
  3. Puri R, Sud R, Khaliq A, et al. Gastrointestinal toxicity due to bitter bottle gourd (Lagenaria siceraria)–a report of 15 cases. Indian J Gastroenterol 2011;30(5):233–236. DOI: 10.1007/s12664-011-0110-z
  4. Naranjo CA, Busto U, Sellers EM, et al. A method for estimating the probability of adverse drug reactions. Clin Pharmacol Ther 1981;30(2):239–245. DOI: 10.1038/clpt.1981.154
  5. Indian Council of Medical Research Task Force. Assessment of effects on health due to consumption of bitter bottle gourd (Lagenaria siceraria) juice. Indian J Med Res 2012;135(1):49–55. DOI: 10.4103/0971-5916.93424
  6. Khan SA, Shelleh HH, Bhat AR, et al. Colocynth toxicity. A possible cause of bloody diarrhea. Saudi Med J 2003;24(8):904–906. PMID: 12939683.
  7. Rymal KS, Chambliss OL, Bond MD, et al. Squash containing toxic cucurbitacin compounds occurring in California and Alabama. J Food Prot 1984;47(4):270–271. DOI: 10.4315/0362-028X-47.4.270
  8. Nadkarni N, D'Cruz S, Sachdev A. Hematemesis due to bitter melon (momordica charantia) extract-induced gastric ulcerations. Indian J Gastroenterol 2010;29(1):37–38. DOI: 10.1007/s12664-010-0009-0
  9. Sharma A, Sharma JP, Jindal R, et al. Bottle gourd poisoning. JK Sci 2006;8(2). ISSN: 09721177.
PDF Share
PDF Share

© Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers (P) LTD.