End-Stage Alcoholism: Signs, Symptoms, and Treatment

Heavy alcohol use can cause cardiomyopathy, a condition in which the heart loses its ability to pump blood effectively. It can cause many problems, eventually becoming fatal as the heart cannot pump enough blood to maintain life. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, in 2012, an estimated 7.2 percent of American adults aged 18 and older, approximately 17 million people, had a diagnosable alcohol use disorder. Men have alcohol use disorder almost twice as often as women; of the estimated 17 million affected adults, 11.2 million were men and 5.7 million were women.2 Adolescents are not immune. In 2012, an estimated 855,000 young people between years of age had this disorder. Alcohol abuse can have devastating and long-term effects on brain function and cognition.

final stages of alcoholism

Genetics and family history both play a role in the development of alcoholism and the end-stage conditions that it eventually leads to. Alcohol has been found to be directly causally related to some diseases and conditions, such as mouth cancer in a person with a history of heavy chronic drinking. In the unfortunate event that a chronic drinker develops a serious health condition or disease, the treating physician can explain whether alcohol was a direct cause or a component cause. The attending physician can also explain how continued drinking will impact the specific condition(s) present.

What Risk Does End-Stage Alcoholism Cause?

They may begin drinking early in the day and plan their day around their drinking. In social situations, they may be unable to stop drinking when others do and find that they can’t handle as much as they previously could without becoming drunk. Blackout episodes, where the individual does 5 stages of alcoholism not remember what they’ve said or done while drinking, may occur. Sadly, many people use alcohol to heal trauma, for courage in areas where they are insecure, or in combination with other drugs. These unhealthy coping mechanisms only complicate and worsen an alcohol use disorder.

Some chronic alcoholics develop a condition called Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, which results from a thiamine (vitamin B-1) deficiency. The condition, which is sometimes called wet brain, is characterized by eye movement disorders, loss of muscle https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/what-is-the-life-expectancy-of-an-alcoholic/ coordination, confusion and memory issues. It affects more men than women and is fatal 10 to 20 percent of the time. The end-stage alcoholic suffers from a host of physical problems, including severe damage to vital organs such as the liver.

Alcoholism Outlook & Treatment

Between 3 and 5 percent of people withdrawing from alcohol develop grand mal seizures and severe confusion, known as delirium tremens. Delirium tremens symptoms typically begins about three days after other withdrawal symptoms start. It usually lasts for between two and three days, and it can be fatal.

If you or someone you know suffers from anger and alcoholism, don’t let it get to this point. The irreversible brain damage Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome causes can shorten your lifespan. Even when Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome is still reversible, the complications that it causes can be fatal if proper treatment is not provided. This is especially true for teens who attend parties where drinking is the primary activity. You might think binge drinking is safe when you only do it occasionally, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

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