Chronic alcohol intoxication: signs and symptoms

The main difficulty in the treatment of chronic intoxication with alcohol is the lack of willingness of the patient to be treated, the non-recognition of an existing problem, the lack of adequate assessment of his dismal situation. This is due to severe damage to all parts of the brain, the loss of logical and analytical thinking. Chronic alcoholic intoxication develops on the background of the emergence of physical and psychological dependence on alcohol beverages. To break this vicious circle will require the joint work of psychiatrist and psychotherapist.

Features of alcohol intoxication

Regular consumption of alcoholic beverages leads to extensive poisoning of the human body. Ethyl alcohol belongs to toxic chemical compounds. He is no different from poisons of plant and animal origin, heavy metals, caustic alkalis and acids. In addition to direct pathological effects on the internal organs, ethanol is able to disrupt the regulation of brain all vital systems.

Emilovy alcohol like the poison of a snake or grass Aconite in small amounts has a therapeutic effect. It can help you to get rid of a cold, to disinfect the skin. Exceeding the recommended dose or concentration will lead to alcohol intoxication, including chronic.

Negative processes in the Central nervous system begin to develop due to the deficiency of thiamine in the cells. An acute shortage of vitamin group B is caused by disorders of absorption of biologically active substances in the gastrointestinal tract. Thiamine is an active participant in the oxidation of alcohol, and its decomposition to non-toxic compounds. Too little vitamin causes a disruption in carbohydrate metabolism, which leads to the accumulation in the cells of organic acids. Central and peripheral nervous system begins to change irreversibly:

  • it swells the brain;
  • damaged and dying neurons;
  • visually smoothed gyrus;
  • right psychodelics.

At the initial stage of chronic intoxication pathological changes affect the young nervous system – the cerebral cortex. In humans, reduced ability to memorize, the worse changing nature develops emotional instability. Relatives are beginning to cause concern unmotivated outbursts of aggression, a manifestation of jealousy is biased.

The early stage of alcohol intoxication is characterized by reduced muscle reflexes. From abusing alcohol the person on the forehead appear distinctive transverse folds of the skin. Casual alcoholic is experiencing difficulties while trying to smile and wide open eyes.

In chronic intoxication disturbed functional activity of the autonomic nervous system. Concerned about human severe attacks of choking, strange sensations in the body, palpitations. This state causes fear of imminent death and hallucinations. Even as an alcoholic are able to bind the appeared symptoms of poisoning with regular consumption of alcohol beverages, the breakdown continues to gain strength.

How to understand that a person becomes an alcoholic

Alcoholic intoxication chronic character, extensive poisoning of the body systems with ethanol, developing on the background if non-permanent use, but in significant amounts. A person in such a situation the dependence is not yet formed, but the internal organs and brain have already begun to irreversibly deteriorate. Alcohol poisoning can be called the trigger for the development of numerous pathologies.

Casual alcoholic conceals from the people around him, the systematic abuse of alcohol. In the vast majority of cases he is aware of the impending danger, but feels able to stop in time. This pushes the possibility of complete cure of chronic intoxication in the first stage of the disease.

Prolonged poisoning of the body has huge portions of ethanol sooner or later becomes obvious. A pathological condition is visualized in these signs:

  1. Excessive body weight or lack of weight.
  2. Recurrence of hypertension.
  3. Tremor of upper and lower limbs, unsteadiness of gait.
  4. Swelling of the ear and of the breast.
  5. Excess perspiration.
  6. The turbidity of the mucous membranes.
  7. Reddening of the palms and face.
  8. Visible capillaries on the skin's surface.

If the person had a symptom of 2-3 of the above symptoms, then it may not be relevant to alcoholic intoxication. A greater number of changes in the body relates to disturbing factors, indicates the frequent use of alcoholic beverages and a significant dose.

The clinical picture of chronic poisoning

The abuse of alcohol never goes unnoticed. At what point does the organism will fail, depends on many factors. These include genetic predisposition to physical dependence and overall health. Great importance is the age and sex of the person, as well as the amount of ethanol.

Alcoholic addictivecharacterized by the severity of withdrawal symptoms and the frequency of his appearances. If in the morning a person feels overwhelmed, tormented by his headache and thirst, the probability of forming the dependence is extremely high.

When the diagnosis of chronic intoxication is impossible to find a internal organ that would not have devastating effects of alcohol.


The main cause of cirrhosis, a deadly disease, is the use of high doses of ethanol. Not all alcoholics can be attributed to the carriers of the disease, but fatty liver is at each of them. The mechanism of alcohol poisoning is based on the structure of the biological barrier, which consists of gepatitov surrounded by connective tissue. The liver continuously occurring biochemical reactions:

  • are neutralized toxins;
  • are metabolized fats, proteins and carbohydrates;
  • the exchange of vitamins and minerals.

Neytralizuya in gepatitah not only compound synthesized in the body, but also hit him from the environment, for example, ethyl alcohol. In the liver alcoholic beverages is converted by enzymes to acetaldehyde, a dangerous toxin, contributing to fatty liver. Fat droplets accumulate in gepatitah and reduce their functional activity.

Fatty degeneration is well amenable to treatment with a pharmacological. The danger is in long-term asymptomatic disease. This reduces the likelihood of detecting the disease at an early stage.

In the absence of treatment of chronic intoxication fatty degeneration gradually transformirovalsya to hepatitis and then cirrhosis of the liver. The latter is expressed in irreversible degeneration of the structural elements of the biological barrier, when capacity replaced by fibrous connective tissue. Only a complete rejection of alcohol will save the life of a person in the chronic stage of intoxication.

Cardiovascular system

Alcohol poisoning provokes cardiomyopathy, pathologies characterized by structural changes and a decrease in functional activity of the myocardium. Happens fat the deformation of the heart muscle, the result of which is an impaired ability of the myocardium to contract normally. The consequences of the disease affect not only the heart and blood vessels, but also all system of life.

From abusing alcohol person develops kidney and hypertension, coronary artery disease, arrhythmia. After the autopsy pathologists alcoholics were found to have degeneration of the heart muscle and infarction.

Gastrointestinal tract

Chronic alcohol intoxication causes atrophy of the inner walls of stomach, intestine, duodenum. Reduced ability of the mucosa to absorb nutrients and biologically active substances entering the food. Since alcoholics often have reduced appetite, in combination with the poor absorption that leads to degeneration and acute shortage of vitamins in the body, especially of group B.

Ulceration of the mucous membrane leads to the formation of damaged epithelial cells of fibrous tissue, devoid of any functional activity. As the exacerbation of the pathological process on the inner wall of the stomach are formed numerous folds and cysts, inflammatory lesions associated bacterial infection. The appearance of the ulcer in chronic intoxication may cause acute pancreatitis. If a person continues to consume alcohol even in this state, it's likely a quick death.

Mental changes in alcoholic intoxication

Anyone who watched the progression of chronic intoxication, might notice that the alcoholic rapidly becomes stupid. He is gradually losing professional and even domestic skills, since it is impossible to carry on a conversation because of the obsession with a single conviction. Mental disorders with long-term abuse of alcohol also inevitable as the onset of old age. In the initial stages of poisoning arise such neurological disorders:

  1. Emotional instability, increased irritability, fatigue, lack of good mood (sober).
  2. Insomnia, poor shift sleep phases.

Changes in alcoholic personality type, which is characterized by the absence of former interests and irresponsible behavior. Ethyl alcohol abusers a person acquires the ability to get out and a lot of lying becomes unnecessary.

All alcoholics are different primitive humor that only he understands and drinking buddies. The distinctive feature of mental changes in chronic intoxication is self-centeredness. Their desires and needs are taken into account by the person in the first place, and the family and friends recede into the background.

Personal deformation of alcoholics has the ability to progress quickly. For severe forms of poisoning are:

  • delirium tremens;
  • visual and auditory hallucinations;
  • a state of paranoia.

A classic example of mental disorder is a delirium tremens.Interesting fact – the impetus for the emergence of delirium tremens becomes a complete rejection of alcoholic beverages. One develops the following symptoms:

  1. Quickened heart rate, raised blood pressure.
  2. Growing concern, the fear of imminent death.
  3. There are bright visions.

In this state, the alcoholic becomes potentially dangerous to the surrounding people. Many serious crimes were committed in delirium tremens, when a person takes the desired for the reality. To save the life of an alcoholic and his family members will only need to be hospitalized. In stationary conditions is carried out detoxication therapy. Then the patient is immersed in a deep medicated sleep. You cannot give a person hypnotics pharmacological agents in a state of delirium tremens. First, it may enhance aggression, and secondly, there is a risk of cardiac arrest and death.

How to help a person with chronic intoxication of alcohol

Analysis for the presence of chronic alcohol intoxication is carried out for the determination of ethanol in exhaled air, the person. Diagnosis of pathology, as a rule, not required – the appearance of an alcoholic speaks for itself. To assess the extent of damage to the brain and internal organs are recommended numerous laboratory and instrumental studies.

Chronic toxicity is pointless to treat at home. For successful treatment the patient must completely abandon the consumption of any alcoholic beverages. In the hospital with hemodialysis or plasmapheresis, the blood is cleaned from toxic compounds, replenishes the deficiency of vitamins and minerals. The recovery from alcohol intoxication takes from several months to a year depending on the severity of the diagnosed lesions.