Alcohol intoxication is a common medical problem. In some studies, more than half of all trauma patients are intoxicated with ethanol at the time of arrival to the trauma center. In addition, ethanol is often used in suicide attempts. More than 8 million Americans are alcohol dependent, and as much as 15% of the population is considered at risk.
Acute intoxication can result in respiratory depression, aspiration, hypotension, and cardiovascular collapse. Although many patients present with ethanol intoxication as their sole issue, many other patients have ethanol intoxication as part of a larger picture. Thus, the morbidity is often from co-ingestants or coexisting injuries and illnesses. Long-term use results in hepatic and gastrointestinal (GI) injuries. Coma, stupor, respiratory depression, and death can result from high concentrations of acute ethanol intoxication.
Can you correctly identify key elements of alcohol poisoning? Test yourself with our short quiz.
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Cite this: Richard H. Sinert. Fast Five Quiz: Are You Prepared to Confront Alcohol Intoxication and Poisoning? - Medscape - Sep 29, 2017.