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Ethanol-independent methanol elimination in chronic alcoholics

, : Ethanol-independent methanol elimination in chronic alcoholics. Blutalkohol 32(6): 317-336

72% of a collective of chronic alcoholics (DSM-III-R, ICD 9), who were admitted under the influence of alcohol in order to undergo alcohol withdrawal, showed a serum methanol concentration (SMC) above 10 mg/l. This level is usually considered to be the one for the detection of regular alcohol consumption. The SMC values were considerably higher in cases where alcoholic beverages with a higher methanol content were consumed rather than the ones lower in methanol. In the majority of patients a decrease of the methanol concentration could only be detected once an individually varying limit concentration of ethanol (0-0.62 g/kg) was reached. There were, however, a few exceptions where the elimination of methanol independent from the ethanol concentration could be seen. Contrasting the general collective, these 'ethanol independent' methanol eliminators showed a much higher serum level of ethanol and methanol at the time of admission. As a sign of addiction, all patients showed increased beta 60 values for ethanol and preferred high proof beverages, which at the same time have high methanol contents.


PMID: 8579814

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