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January 1961

Effect of Acute Alcohol Intoxication on Epileptic Patients: A Clinical Experimental Study

Author Affiliations

From the Neurological Research Division, Lafayette Clinic, Michigan Epilepsy Center and Departments of Neurology, Biochemistry and Psychiatry, Wayne State University, College of Medicine.

Arch Neurol. 1961;4(1):103-106. doi:10.1001/archneur.1961.00450070105012

It is common clinical experience that seizure control in epileptic patients who suffer also from chronic alcoholism is very difficult to achieve. It has likewise been noted that certain alcoholic patients will have isolated epileptic seizures after alcohol ingestion. These two observations, together with the formerly held view that alcohol is a stimulating agent, have led to the current view that all epileptics should abstain from alcohol ingestion lest they would bring on a seizure. This is expressed in most leading text books of neurology as well as texts of internal medicine and psychiatry.1-8 Yet it is of interest that a statistical survey conducted by Lennox in 19419 revealed that of 361 epileptic patients who admitted to the intermittent use of a l c o h o l, 79% said that seizures had never resulted from alcohol intake, 16% reported an occasional occurrence of seizures after alcohol

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