The muscular paralysis and difficulty in breathing (due to paralysis of the diaphragm) could have been caused by saxitoxin poisoning from the shellfish, if they had been gathered during a red tide. A positive chemical analysis of Sandra's blood and of the shellfish for saxitoxin would confirm this diagnosis. The monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor was probably prescribed to treat her depression. It turns out, however, that there are significant drug-food interactions with MAO inhibitors—in fact, shellfish is specifically contraindicated! Other drugs are now available to treat depression that have fewer side effects.
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This ebook provides an introductory explanation of the workings of the human body, with an effort to draw connections between the body systems and explain their interdependencies. A framework for the book is homeostasis and how the body maintains balance within each system. This is intended as a first introduction to physiology for a college-level course.