Alcohol Substance Poisoning
The poisoning of alcohol by surrogates takes a leading position in the statistics of all intoxications. And 98% of patients die before hospitalization. A brief description of the alcohol surrogate will help to understand the cause of such high mortality.
What are surrogates of alcohol? What are the signs of poisoning with such an alcoholic fake? How to help the victim? What are the consequences of such intoxication? The answers to these questions will be discussed in this article.
What applies to surrogates of alcohol
Alcohol poisoning in the international classification of ICD-10 diseases corresponds to codes T51.1-T52.9.
They are divided into two groups: those surrogates of alcohol that can contain ethyl alcohol in their composition and those that can be without it. The first group includes:
- Butyl alcohol. Death occurs after taking just 30 milliliters.
- Hydrolysis and sulphite alcohols, which are obtained from wood. They are more toxic than ethanol due to the presence of a small amount of methyl alcohol in the composition.
- Methylated spirit or technical alcohol. Contains a little wood alcohol and aldehyde.
- Colognes and lotions. They can include up to 60% ethanol.
- The polish contains several types of toxic alcohols.
- The stain, together with ethanol, has dyes, from which the skin and mucous membranes of the patient become blue in color.
The second group or they are also called "false surrogates" is represented by:
- methyl alcohol;
- ethylene glycol.
Clinical symptoms of poisoning with alcohol substitutes
Symptoms of poisoning with alcohol substitutes differ depending on which group they belong to. They will be more favorable if they are alcohol substitutes of the first group containing ethyl alcohol, and heavier and more dangerous when poisoned with methanol or ethylene glycol, so they should be discussed in more detail.
Symptoms of poisoning with surrogates containing ethyl alcohol
Clinically observed first signs of alcohol intoxication:
- emotional and motor excitement;
- redness of the face;
- a state of euphoria;
- increased salivation;
- a feeling of mental and physical relaxation.
Then intoxication is replaced by symptoms of alcohol intoxication. The skin becomes pale. There are frequent urge to urinate. Pupils dilate, a feeling of dryness arises in the mouth. Increased mental and physical activity is accompanied by a violation of coordination, the movements become sweeping. Becomes reduced concentration of attention, speech is indistinct. Sharply reduced or completely absent criticism of their words and actions.
Symptoms of poisoning with methanol (wood alcohol)
Methyl alcohol is rapidly absorbed in the digestive system. About 75% of the absorbed poison is excreted with respiration, the rest - with urine. The lethal dose is from 50 to 150 milliliters. The main impact of poisoning is on the nervous system and the kidneys. There is a psychotropic effect (pathological changes in the psyche) and a neurotoxic effect, which is accompanied, inter alia, by damage to the optic nerves and the retina.
So, when poisoning surrogates of alcohol containing methanol, the symptoms are the following:
- nausea, vomiting;
- intoxication and euphoria are poorly expressed;
- impaired vision: flashing of black dots in front of the eyes, fuzzy vision, diplopia (double vision) and even blindness;
- outwardly in such patients, the pupils are dilated, react weakly to light;
- 1-2 days after the poisoning there are pains in the abdomen, lower back, aches in muscles and joints;
- the temperature rises to 38⁰;
- dry skin and mucous membranes;
- low blood pressure;
- interruptions in the work of the heart;
- confusion of consciousness;
- fits of excitement accompanied by convulsions;
- As the symptoms increase, the victim falls into a coma, paralysis of the limbs develops.
Symptoms of ethylene glycol poisoning
Ethylene glycol is also rapidly absorbed in the digestive tract. About 60% of the poison is split in the liver, about 20-30% - excreted by the kidneys. Therefore, these organs will suffer most of all, up to the development of their acute insufficiency. In severe poisoning, signs of damage to the nervous system appear.
When intoxication with this surrogate of alcohol symptoms develop over periods.
- Early period. It lasts about 12 hours and is characterized by signs of alcoholic intoxication with good health.
- Toxic damage to the nervous system. There are: nausea, vomiting, headache, thirst, diarrhea, skin and mucous membranes become bluish. Pupils are dilated, body temperature rises, there is difficulty breathing, tachycardia, psychomotor agitation. Possible loss of consciousness with the development of seizures.
- Nephro and hepatotoxic period develops on day 2-5 from the onset of the disease. There is a clinic of liver and renal failure. Appears yellowness of the skin, which appears first on the sclera and, in the last turn, turn yellow palms. Itchy skin itch, darkening of urine can occur. Renal failure is manifested by a decrease in diuresis up to its absence.
Emergency assistance for poisoning with surrogates of alcohol
If suspected of alcohol poisoning by surrogates, emergency care will depend on the patient's initial condition. If the patient is unconscious, then it must be laid on a flat solid surface, turn his head to one side, so as not to be aspirated by vomit masses and call an ambulance. If there is a violation of respiratory and cardiac activity, first call an ambulance, and then perform an indirect heart massage and artificial respiration.
When a victim in the minds of the first pre-medical care consists of the following:
- take sorbent;
- saline laxative;
- to drink an enveloping broth, for example, kissel;
- emergency hospitalization in a hospital.
Treatment of alcohol poisoning in hospital:
- Gastric lavage through the probe. When methanol is intoxicated, it is repeated for 3 days. Sorbents are given.
- Antidote treatment in both cases is the same: intravenous drip is administered 5% ethanol. For mild poisoning, ingestion of ethyl alcohol 30% is allowed inside.
- When poisoning with ethylene glycol, calcium gluconate is introduced to neutralize the products of cleavage of the poisonous substance.
- Intensive diuresis is performed, which is based on the drip injection of a large number of solutions and diuretics in the absence of impaired renal function.
- The elimination of toxins from the blood is also carried out by hemodialysis.
- The introduction of glucose with novocaine, prednisolone, vitamins of group B and C.
- When poisoning with methanol, spinal punctures are performed.
- In severe cases of ethylene glycol intoxication, a kidney transplant may be necessary.
Consequences of poisoning with alcohol substitutes
Despite the fact that the flow during poisoning with surrogates of alcohol containing ethyl alcohol is more favorable, the consequences can be very serious. The forecast is determined by the number of drunk falsifications, and to a greater extent by the timeliness of the rendered medical care. If the patient suffered from chronic alcoholism, poisoning is more severe and there are more deaths than those who did not have alcohol dependence.
With intoxication with methanol, complete loss of vision is possible, which after the removal of the poison from the body is not restored. Surrogates based on ethylene glycol lead to renal failure. Such patients basically die.
The problem of poisoning with alcohol surrogates, unfortunately, remains relevant today. Many people face this disease, so knowing the signs of such intoxication will help not only to provide urgent assistance to the victim in a timely manner, but also to save his life!