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March 1984

Survival After High Blood Alcohol Levels: Association With First-Order Elimination Kinetics

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Medicine (Drs O'Neill and Prichard) and Biochemistry (Dr Tipton), Trinity College, and St James' Hospital (Dr Quinlan), Dublin. Dr O'Neill is now with the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada.

Arch Intern Med. 1984;144(3):641-642. doi:10.1001/archinte.1984.00350150255052

• A patient survived acute alcohol intoxication with an unprecedented blood alcohol level of 1,500 mg/dL. Treatment included peritoneal dialysis and intravenously administered fructose. Alcohol elimination followed first-order kinetics, in which the elimination rate is proportional to concentration, rather than zero order in which the metabolic rate is independent of concentration. The report provides further evidence for first-order elimination kinetics with high blood alcohol levels and for an adaptive increase in alcohol metabolism with long-term alcohol consumption.

(Arch Intern Med 1984;144:641-642)

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