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Old 07-23-2012, 09:14 AM   #1
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travis702 HB User
Alcohol and Low Blood Sugar Question

I want to give a little background on my problem. I am 24 years old. I have had a problem with drinking since I was about 17 or 18 years old. I have been known to drink for 3-4 days straight, with little to no actual nourishment going into my body. (Please don't judge, I'm just letting you know the facts.) Now after I would finally give up on these binges, I'd go through extended periods, 8-10 hours, where I'd shake uncontrollably, I'd get the chills very bad, yet sweating profusely at the same time. I'd be exhausted, barely able to move, yet unable to sleep at the same time due to the symptoms. I always just attributed this purely to the alcohol as withdrawal. In the past 6 months, I have not abstained from alcohol, but my consumption has dropped 75%, which is substantial considering where I was at. What I find now, though, is that if I go out and have 3-4 beers at a bar, while not as extreme, I get the same symptoms the night I drink, the next day, etc. Basically any amount of alcohol gives my body the symptoms (at different extremes) that I'd get from binge drinking. I've read that excessive drinking can send you into a hypoglycemic episode, but it shouldn't happen every time from what I've read. So I guess all in all what I am trying to find out.

1. Is this most likely the effects of reactive hypoglycemia?
2. Could my excessive drinking have caused these issues in even small amounts of alcohol being consumed?
3. Is the only treatment alcohol abstinence?

 
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Old 07-23-2012, 10:34 AM   #2
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Re: Alcohol and Low Blood Sugar Question

Also, I am having difficulties maintaining weight. I am 5'8 and went from 134 to 123 in about 5 days, while not changing my eating habits. This could be completely unrelated.

 
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:39 PM   #3
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Re: Alcohol and Low Blood Sugar Question

Hi Travis,

Depending on how much you use, I would be inclined to say you may be experiencing alcohol withdrawl or if extremely bad, delirium tremens.

Withdrawl symptoms:
tremors, easily startled, insomnia, anxiety, low self-esteem, anorexia, dream-like state

Delirium Tremens symptoms:
All of the above plus panic, disorientation, confusion, vomiting, diarrhea, paranoisa, suicidal ideations, possible convulsions (especially 48 hours after drinking ceases)

Treatments:
benzodiazepines, diazepam (valium)
Monitor vitals, pulse bp temperature
Seizure precautions
remain in a QUIET, WELL-LIT environment
hospital immediately for seizure

Alcohol hypoglycemia usually happens to type I diabetics -- I'm not sure if you're diabetic or not, but if you are, this could definitely be the case. If you aren't diabetic, it seems less likely. Try eating with your alcohol. Your body may also be reacting to having less than it's accustomed to, I'd imagine.

Hope that helps,
Melissa

 
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