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Podcast #316: Abnormalities in Alcohol Intoxication

Emergency Medical Minute

Release Date: 04/09/2018

Author: Michael Hunt, M.D.

Educational Pearls:


  • 1% of patients presenting to ED with alcohol intoxication end up going to the ICU
  • Most common critical illnesses were acute hypoxic respiratory failure, sepsis, and intracranial hemorrhage
  • Predictive markers: Vital abnormalities (hypoxia, tachycardic, tachypneic, hypothermic, hyperthermia, hypoglycemia) and patients receiving parenteral sedatives had higher incidence of ICU admission



Klein, LR; et al. (2018). Unsuspected Critical Illness Among Emergency Department Patients Presenting for Acute Alcohol Intoxication. Annals of Emergency Medicine. 71(3):279-288