Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Woman dies after she consumes pufferfish

Woman dies after she consumes pufferfish

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The victims were hospitalised after eating discarded, poisonous pufferfish in Banteay Meanchey province. Supplied

Woman dies after she consumes pufferfish

A woman died on Sunday, and three of her family members were hospitalised after eating discarded, poisonous pufferfish in Banteay Meanchey province, local police said on Monday.

Touch Loch, 39, her two daughters and a nephew became sick after eating the fish in Srah Lech village in Preah Netr Preah district’s Preah Netr Preah commune.

“District and commune authorities have issued regular warnings but people still eat the poisonous pufferfish,” district police chief Meas Rithy told The Post.

Commune police chief Lot Monny said the daughters and the nephew were sent to Preah Netr Preah Referral Hospital and their health had improved after they received medical treatment.

He said the three should be able to return home soon, but doctors wanted to them to stay in the hospital a little longer before discharging them.

“Villagers went fishing and caught some poisonous pufferfish which were thrown away."

“The victim found some 10 to 20 pufferfish. The fishermen told her not to eat the fish because the fish were poisonous. The victim said she would be fine,” Monny said.

One of the daughters told police that last Friday her father went to work as a harvesting machine operator, while her mother found the pufferfish and cooked them.

Two days after eating them, nothing was wrong. But on Sunday, Loch started to feel unwell, experiencing nausea and suffering from a bad headache. She was sent to Preah Netr Preah Referral Hospital where she died shortly after arriving.

After that, Loch’s daughters and nephew also fell ill, with symptoms including nausea and a high temperature. They were sent to the hospital on the same day.

The Ministry of Health has previously stated that there are 10 types of pufferfish, of which five are poisonous – redeye puffer, Monotrete cochinchinensis, green spotted puffer, eyespot puffer and Tetraodon fluviatilis, also known as green puffer.

The ministry said the level of poison increases during their reproduction period between February and March, and July and August.

The most dangerous parts of the fish, the ministry said, are eggs and sperm, followed by liver, intestines, skin and meat.

Symptoms include itchy lips and mouth, headache, dizziness, speech disorder, nausea and diarrhoea, which will usually occur from 20 minutes to two hours after eating.


  • Ice cream, noodles flagged over carcinogen

    The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) has identified three types of instant noodles and ice cream trademarks originating from Thailand, Vietnam and France that are suspected to contain ethylene oxide, which poses a cancer risk to consumers. The general department has

  • Exclusive interview with Josep Borrell Fontelles, High Representative of the EU

    CAMBODIA is hosting the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings this week with top officials from the US, China, and Russia and other countries in the region slated to attend and to meet with face-to-face with their counterparts on the sidelines. In

  • Rise in Thai air routes to Siem Reap fuels travel hopes

    Local tourism industry players are eager for regional airline Bangkok Airways Pcl’s resumption of direct flight services between the Thai capital and Siem Reap town on August 1 – home of Cambodia’s awe-inspiring Angkor Archaeological Park – which is expected to boost the growth rate of

  • ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ meet commences, Taiwan issue possibly on table

    The 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and related meetings hosted by Cambodia kicks off in Phnom Penh on August 3, with progress, challenges, and the way forward for the ASEAN Community-building on the table. Issues on Taiwan, sparked by the visit of US House Speaker

  • Angkor lifetime pass, special Siem Reap travel offers planned

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to introduce a convenient, single lifetime pass for foreign travellers to visit Angkor Archaeological Park and potentially other areas. The move is designed to stimulate tourism to the culturally rich province of Siem Reap as the start of the “Visit

  • Recap of this year’s ASEAN FM meet and look ahead

    This year’s edition of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) hosted by Cambodia comes against the backdrop of heightened global tensions and increasing rivalry between major powers that have been compared to the animosity of the Cold War era. The following is The Post’