Avatar universal

About complications of alcohol poisoning


Back in 2007, I was rushed to the ER after a night of binge drinking. I had just turned 16, I was an inexperienced drinker and didn't know my limits.
I had half a bottle of vodka over the span of 2 hours (9pm - 11pm), and a third the following hour (11pm - midnight). So about 0.8 liter of 45% vodka over a period of 3 hours.
To make matters worse, I was drinking on a virtually empty stomach.

Before I could finish the bottle, I fell unconscious in the middle of the street. Two of my friends drunkenly dragged me off the main street by my feet.
They slapped my face for 20 minutes, but I couldn't be woken. I was throwing up all over sizeable amounts of sick while completely unconscious.
They finally called an ambulance, which apparently took 45 minutes to get to the scene and rush me back to the ER.

I woke up around 8am, after 7 hours of beauty sleep. I was still intoxicated and the room kept spinning. I noticed a needle in my arm, I think they gave me drips, and some thing on my finger which monitored my heartbeat.
A nurse came, this happened in a foreign country so I didn't get all of what she said, but I understood that I had been diagnosed with acute alcohol intoxication (alcohol poisoning), that I spent the night in a vodka-induced coma and that I could've died.
I think she said my blood alcohol content was 500 or .50.
They kept me under observation all afternoon, tested my urine, and I had to call my parents to pick me up.
After that, I had the most awful hangover for a week.

I've read that one isolated incident of extremely heavy drinking can provoke damage to the brain or brain shrinkage, the causes are lack of oxygen, dehydration, or hypoglycemia.
Given my high BAC, empty stomach and young age, how likely do you think it is that I inflicted some damage to my brain that eventful night? Could the damage be exposed by brain imaging (even 7 years later)? If damage occurred, is it permanent or can I recover?

2 Responses
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1684282 tn?1614701284
It is unlikely that you caused long term damage if this never happened again. However with repeated binging consequences can be serious and long lasting.
Helpful - 1
Avatar universal

Thank you for your prompt response.

I just have a few more questions, if you'd like to answer to them.

I came across a post from someone who claims:

" A person with alcohol poisoning will usually either: 1) reach a level where the rate of alcohol elimination (and its effect on the respiratory system) far outpaces the time required (so to speak) for brain damage to occur at any particular BAC level (also realize that at high BAC levels, elimination is non-linear due to the action of enzymes not usually involved in the process with elimination rates around -.04/hour) or 2) reach a BAC level which depresses the respiratory system to a level where damage (and low oxygen hampers its ability to pump efficiently) to the cardiac muscle occurs, slowing blood flow which, in turn, further lowers blood oxygen levels until the heart stops. "

" Overall, dehydration would only concern me as a possible cause of brain damage if alcohol were used to excess (non stop) for many days by an experienced drinker. Hypoglycemia-induced brain damage would only concern me in cases of alcohol poisoning where the person has not eaten anything for a day or longer "

" People who survive alcohol poisoning with brain damage are always the ones who only survive due to intensive medical care, and these patients usually remain in coma 24 hours or more "

How true are these statements?

Helpful - 0

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