Woman gets a rare case of ‘toxic squash syndrome’ after drinking bitter gourd juice

Minutes after drinking a bitter juice made from a pureed gourd, a woman went into shock, a life-threatening condition where blood flow in the body plummets and organs can be injured from lack of oxygen.

She told emergency room doctors that she’d consumed the same type of gourd daily for many years, but on this occasion, “it tasted abnormally bitter.” That vile taste may explain why she developed “toxic squash syndrome,” a rare condition that arises from eating toxic substances sometimes found in squashes and gourds.

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