Chronic Alcohol Intoxication : A Constellation Of Signs And Symptoms

803 Words Nov 8th, 2016 4 Pages
Acute alcohol intoxication can have a constellation of signs and symptoms. Our patient had multiple manifestations of alcohol intoxication which will be discussed in detail separately.

The holiday heart syndrome (HHS) is the occurrence of cardiac arrhythmias, most commonly atrial fibrillation after alcohol binge drinking [1].Binge drinking is defined as greater than 5 drinks taken at one time [2]. Binge drinking behavior is associated with an increased risk of sudden death and stroke; acute ingestion may cause spasm of the cerebral arteries while alcohol is itself associated with procoagulant changes after acute ingestion [3]. There is also an increased risk of sudden cardiac death with alcohol abuse and this rises with the amount of alcohol ingested. This may occur in those with no history of myocardial infarction or ischemic heart disease [1]. The syndrome is observed in both alcoholics and nonalcoholics and goes away on abstinence from alcohol. Important characteristics include the absence of any history or family history of any cardiac condition, normal laboratory parameters including electrolytes, thyroid hormones and echocardiogram. Our patient had a similar profile. Though an echocardiogram identified a left ventricular thrombus, there was no observation of any wall motion abnormality or any finding suggestive of a cardiomyopathy. The most common symptom reported by patients with HHS is palpitations. Our patient had this symptom soon after taking the binge which…

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