Vodka poisoning: what to do at home

Vodka poisoning is a serious and dangerous condition. It requires immediate medical care, without which serious illness and even death. More than half of all cases of vodka poisonings are fatal. This article describes the main causes, symptoms and treatment of poisoning with vodka.

The main causes of poisoning with vodka

Vodka is a popular alcoholic beverage. Poisoning associated with its use, are very common. Their number increases during the holidays. The main causes of poisoning vodka is described below.

  • Drinking vodka in large quantities. Ethanol, the main component of vodka, is a toxic substance. It destroys the cells of the Central nervous system, liver and many other organs and systems of the human body. When you use it in moderation develops intoxication. In large doses, it causes poisoning or death.
  • The reception of vodka along with medical drugs. Alcohol is strictly forbidden to combine with:
  1. narcotic analgesics;
  2. non-steroidal anti-inflammatory;
  3. tranquilizers;
  4. neuroleptics;
  5. antidepressants;
  6. hypnotics.
  • The use of surrogates alcohol (methyl alcohol, ethylene glycol, aldehydes) in 80% of cases leads to death. Those who survive remain permanently disabled.
  • Drinking alcohol on an empty stomach. In this case, the entire volume of alcohol is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream and can cause poisoning.

Please note that children alcohol even in small doses, causes acute poisoning.

The main symptoms of alcohol poisoning

Symptoms of poisoning with vodka depends on the amount and composition of consumed. Lesions affect a large number of organs and systems of man. When the poisoning is severe, the patient falls into a deep coma.

Below are the main symptoms, which can manifest vodka poisoning.

  • Severe pain in region of stomach, provoked by the influence of ethanol on the mucosa.
  • Nausea and vomiting – the body's defense mechanisms. The stomach tries to cleanse itself of alcohol. If poisoning severe vomiting may have a Central origin develop due to damage to the nervous system and irritation of the vomiting center in the brain.
  • Profuse diarrhea develops as a result of intoxication syndrome and disorders of the digestive system.
  • Disorders in the Central nervous system are caused by toxic effects of ethanol. They may manifest the following signs:
  1. excitation;
  2. visual and auditory hallucinations;
  3. hyperactivity;
  4. cramps throughout the body;
  5. loss of consciousness (stupor, coma);
  6. spontaneous urination and defecation.
  • Tachycardia (rapid heartbeat), hypotension (reduction in arterial blood pressure) develop dehydration and electrolyte disorders in the blood.
  • Rapid and shallow breathing develops as a result of losing toxins ethanol respiratory center in the brain.
  • Acute respiratory failure can be caused by aspiration (inhalation of) vomit, tongue (can happen with loss of consciousness), spasm of the Airways.
  • Polyuria – increased volume of secreted human urine. Develops when the poisoning is mild and moderate. Polyuria caused by the influence of ethanol on the antidiuretic hormone.
  • Absence of urine (anuria) – a symptom of severe alcohol intoxication. It is caused by development of acute renal failure.
  • Yellowing of the whites of eyes, mucous membranes and skin – a symptom of acute destruction of hepatocytes (liver cells). Jaundice may be accompanied by severe pain in the right hypochondrium.

Characteristics of the clinical picture in cases of poisoning by surrogates

The clinical picture of poisoning by alcohol surrogates is different from the intoxication caused by the usual vodka. These substances are much more dangerous than ethanol and cause acute poisoning when consuming them in small quantities.

The following are the major distinctive clinical features of poisoning different types of surrogate alcohol.

Poisoning with methyl alcohol

Methyl alcohol used in industry. On taste and color it is no different from ethanol. "Counterfeit" vodka is partially or entirely composed of methyl.

The main symptoms of poisoning with methyl alcohol:

  • blurred vision, at first the patient feels the veil and the voyage of flies before the eyes, and then reduced the sharpness of vision and comes complete blindness. Visual changes are caused by the lesion and atrophy of the optic nerve. Such changes are usually not reversible;
  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, pain in the stomach. These symptoms develop due to high intoxication and lesions of the digestive and nervous systems;
  • acute damage to the nervous system may manifest convulsive disorder, disturbance of consciousness. In severe cases, there is a loss of the respiratory center, resulting in death.

Poisoning with ethylene glycol

Ethylene glycol is a substitute for alcohol. It enters into the composition of detergents for washing of glasses, antifreeze, brakefluid and chemical solvents. Poisoning them occur in alcoholics who due to severe physical and psychological dependence all ready to drink, similar to vodka.

Symptoms of ethylene glycol poisoning:

  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, General excitement – the first symptoms of poisoning. They develop several hours after ingestion of liquid ethylene glycol;
  • anuria (complete absence of urine) is a symptom of acute renal failure, which develops due to lesions of the structures of the kidney (tubules and glomeruli) breakdown products of ethylene glycol. Urine may be absent or produced in small amounts (up to 200 ml per day). Allocated urine has a pink-red color;
  • puffiness and yellowness of the skin – a symptom of kidney damage.

The basics of first aid in case of poisoning with vodka

What to do in case of poisoning with vodka at home? The person who poisoned you need to call the ambulance. The treatment of this pathological condition should be conducted by physicians. Manager SMP details tell us about what happened and what is your address.

While the medical team is coming, start to assist the poisoned yourself, it may depend on the prognosis of survival.

Remember that gastric lavage solution of potassium permanganate in cases of poisoning by alcohol is prohibited. This may cause burns of the mucous membrane of the stomach and aggravate the human condition.

Below are the basic steps that you can be able to the person poisoned with vodka, before the arrival of the brigade SMP.

Gastric lavage

To cleanse the stomach should drink 1 liter of plain water, then to snatch her. This procedure can be repeated several times.

Gastric lavage in the home is not possible in the following situations:

  • when disturbed the minds of the patient and inappropriate behavior;
  • if the patient can not swallow and choke drink.


In cases of poisoning with vodka you can use any of the sorbents, which have in your medicine Cabinet. Most popular funds:

  • activated carbon;
  • smectite;
  • APSCO;
  • enterosgel;
  • white coal;
  • sorbex.

Before use, carefully read the terms of drug dosing.


Patient intoxicated with vodka should be actively drunk. It should be started after the cleansing of the stomach. For watering for dining or alkaline mineral water without gas. Water person need every 5-10 minutes for tablespoon. Frequent drinking in small amounts will not provoke new episodes of vomiting.


For removal of intoxication can do an enema. Use simple boiled water at room temperature. Hold it should.

First aid

The ambulance crew will assess the vital indications of the patient (pulse, saturation, blood pressure) and begin to give him first aid. Depending on the condition of the patient, it may consist of:

  • gastric lavage through the probe. It is done if the person is unconscious;
  • artificial ventilation of the lungs, which is in violation of breath. Interesuetsja the patient and connected to an artificial respirator, an oxygen tank;
  • the introduction of antiemetic drugs (metoclopramide, cerucal, osetron);
  • intravenous rehydration (replace fluids lost).

If the patient's condition is severe or doctors suspect intoxication with alcohol substitutes, it hospitalitynet division of toxicology or in the intensive care unit.

Treatment in a hospital

In the hospital in the first place is taken a blood test for alcohol. It can be used to determine the blood concentration of alcohol and to suspect poisoning with a substitute.

When poisoning with methyl alcohol, the patient is injected the antidote is ethyl alcohol.

Hospital treatment may consist of the following stages:

  • intravenous fluids to combat dehydration and intoxication;
  • hemodialysate – cleansing blood. This procedure is indicated in severe intoxication with alcohol or its surrogates;
  • reception enzyme preparations (CREON, Mezim). They need to restore the pancreas and digestive system;
  • diet, drinking regime.

Vodka poisoning is a dangerous condition. It can be caused by taking alcohol in large quantities, or the use of surrogates. Alcohol intoxication can lead to disability or death. In its development it is necessary to immediately call an ambulance and start first aid on their own.