2,3-Butanediol was mistakenly identified as ethylene glycol in plasma specimens from two alcoholic patients. The cyclic phenylboronate ester derivatives of 2,3-butanediol and ethylene glycol had the same retention time when OV-17 was used as the stationary phase for gas chromatography. This led to incorrect diagnosis of ethylene glycol poisoning and unnecessary invasive therapy. Plasma from two chronic alcoholics contained 2,3-butanediol at 3.5 and 3.4 mmol/L. The elimination half-life of 2,3-butanediol was 3.9 days when ethanol was administered during therapy for suspected ethylene glycol poisoning. Low concentrations of 2,3-butanediol might be present in blood of chronic alcoholics as a result of a novel pathway of intermediary metabolism associated with some forms of alcoholism. However, a more likely explanation for fairly high concentrations of 2,3-butanediol is enzymatic production from 2-butanone. This ketone occurs in denatured alcohol preparations often consumed by alcoholics in Sweden.
The influence of psychiatric comorbidity on the course and outcome in a nationwide representative sample (n = 351) of treatment-seeking substance users over a 28-month period was studied prospectively. The patients were administered the Diagnostic Interview Schedule and a questionnaire on drinking history. At 16 and 28 months after admission the patients returned a questionnaire on drinking history and mental health. In cases of those lacking information on either follow-up (45%), details on drinking status was obtained from informants. Completely abstinent were 16%. Generalized anxiety disorder and/or social phobia at the index admission predicted abstinence during the follow-up [odds ratio (OR) = 0.25], whereas onset of alcoholism among these patients after age 25 years predicted a worse prognosis (OR = 13.5). Also increasing number of social consequences related to abuse (OR = 1.3) and drinking more than the median (OR = 2.1) predicted a poor outcome. The abstinent group had significantly better mental health at follow-up. The patients with comorbid psychiatric disorders at admission were worse at follow-up. Although substance use disorders and comorbid psychiatric disorders have to a certain degree separate courses, there is nevertheless significant interaction between them. Early treatment and recognition of comorbid psychiatric disorders among substance abusers is necessary.
BACKGROUND: One hundred twenty women alcoholics recruited to a treatment program called EWA (Early Treatment for Women With Alcohol Addiction) were studied. The selected women were not previously treated for alcohol abuse. METHODS: The women were followed up by use of a structured personal interview, biomarkers sensitive for alcohol abuse (i.e., glutamyl transpeptidase), and questionnaires, by using defined criteria for abstinence, social drinking, satisfactory drinking outcome, and unsatisfactory drinking outcome. RESULTS: Drinking outcome was good (i.e., total abstinence, social drinking, or satisfactory drinking outcome) for 67% of the women during the total follow-up time, by use of strict criteria for relapse. The results were corroborated by the biomarkers. Similar results were reported from two previously studied groups of women from the same department. However, the frequency of abstinence was higher and social drinking was significantly lower among this sample of women. Daily drinking, the use of sedatives, and a long duration of pretreatment alcohol abuse predicted an unfavorable outcome. However, a long duration of outpatient treatment predicted a good outcome, whereas treatment dropout was related to an unsatisfactory drinking outcome. A majority of the women (96%) rated the treatment experience and the treatment program favorably. The overall good results might reflect the selection of the subjects studied. CONCLUSIONS: Improving treatment program adherence would probably improve outcome for the women with an unsatisfactory drinking outcome.
The purpose of the study was to describe the sense of coherence (SOC) of three groups of Finnish polytechnic students (n=287) at the beginning of their studies and to follow it during a period of 3 year amongst the health care students (n=63) of this group. The associations between SOC and smoking, drinking and physical exercise were also studied. The data were collected with a questionnaire which included Antonovsky's (Adv. Nurs. Sci. 1(1983)37) SOC scale. Data analysis was with SPSS statistical software. The students showed a strong sense of coherence at the beginning of their studies. Physical activity was related to the strength of SOC, but no association was found with smoking and drinking. Health care students showed a stronger SOC at the beginning of their studies than the two other groups. During the follow-up focused on the health care students, SOC weakened in 6%, remained unchanged in 65% and strengthened in 32% of the participants. Smoking, drinking and physical exercise showed no association with these changes. Future research should be focused on identifying factors that are related to SOC during education.
The effect of a selective 5-HT(1A) antagonist, 4-(2'-methoxy-)phenyl-1-[2'-(N-2"-pyridinyl)-p-iodobenzamino-]ethyl-piperazine (p-MPPI), on acute ethanol-induced hypothermia, sleep and suppression of acoustic startle reflex in C3H/He mice and Wistar rats was studied. Administration of p-MPPI at the doses of 0.4, 0.7 and 1.0 mg/kg reduced in a dose-dependent manner the ethanol-induced hypothermia and the sleep time and attenuated the ethanol-induced decrease of acoustic startle reflex magnitude in mice. Similar p-MPPI (0.4 mg/kg) effects on ethanol-induced sleep and hypothermia were obtained in rats. It was concluded that 5-HT(1A) receptors were involved in the mechanisms of the ethanol-induced hypothermia and sleep, and that 5-HT(1A) antagonist increased acute ethanol tolerance.