Sunday, February 5, 2012


Sometimes, just a pint could be fatal, this is not talking about drunk driving deaths.

The negative effects of alcohol are as diverse as there are brands of alcohol - It could range from a feeling of euphoria to a state of psychosis and eventually coma.

Patients have been brought into the ER comatose after alcohol intoxication.

Steve (not real name) was brought in with a history of losing consciousness, talking and behaving abnormally.

He was confused, constantly fidgeting, always adjusting his chair and trying to pick some imaginary object from his pocket.

He was like someone lost, completely in a daze; he had difficulty recognising his relative.

Steve finally confessed to have taken a shot of a local gin. Just a shot.

I checked his blood pressure reading; it was quite low, an ominous sign he was going into shock - If nothing was done he was sure to be unconscious in a few minutes.

When Alcohol affects the brain, the following may occur:

1. Confusion
2. A lack of interest
3. Decreased awareness of surrounding
4. Restlessness

All the above were already happening to Steve.

5. Stupor: This is also a state of reduced consciousness but differs from coma because the person can be awakened.
6. Coma: This is the most feared, a state of unarousable unresponsiveness.

If intervention is not prompt in an alcoholic emergency, this may be the end result. This I had to guard against.


Next time you are holding that pint up, admiring the foam and bubbles that cascade down the cup - just before you down that glistening liquid - take a pause, then have a second thought .

image courtesy
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