Cognitive and receptive language development were examined in 135 60-month-old and 137 72-month-old children for whom prenatal exposure to marijuana, cigarettes, and alcohol had been ascertained. Discriminant Function analysis revealed an association between prenatal cigarette exposure and lower cognitive and receptive language scores at 60 and 72 months. This paralleled and extended observations made with this sample at annual assessments at 12 to 48 months of age. Unlike observations made at 48 months, prenatal exposure to marijuana was not associated with the cognitive and verbal outcomes. Relatively low levels of maternal alcohol consumption did not have significant relationships with the outcome variables. The importance of assessing subtle components rather than global cognitive and language skills to detect potential behavioral teratogenic effects of the drugs being examined is discussed.
Comment In: J Dev Behav Pediatr. 1992 Dec;13(6):425-81469111
Polyhexamethyleneguanidine hydrochloride (PHMG) is an antimicrobial biocide of the guanidine family. In the period from August 2006 to May 2007, more than 12500 patients were admitted to hospital with a history of drinking illegal cheap "vodka" in 44 different regions in Russia, of whom 9.4% died. In reality, the "vodka" was an antiseptic liquid composed of ethanol (˜93%), diethyl phthalate, and 0.1-0.14% PHMG (brand name "Extrasept-1").
We performed an analysis of the clinical features and outcome in four poisoning treatment centers in the cities of Perm, Ekaterinburg, Irkutsk, and Khabarovsk. A total of 579 patients (215 females and 364 males) with similar symptoms were included.
The main symptoms on admission included jaundice (99.7%), skin itch (78.4%), weakness (96%), anorexia (65.8%), dizziness (65.3%), nausea (54.8%), vomiting (22.6%), stomach ache (52.7%), diarrhea (32%), and fever (50%). Mild symptoms were found in 2.5% of cases, moderate in 63%, and severe in 34.5%. Laboratory results were (mean ± SD): total bilirubin 249 ± 158 µmol/L, direct bilirubin 166 ± 97 µmol/L, cholesterol 14 ± 8 mmol/L, alanine aminotransferase 207 ± 174 IU/L, aspartate aminotransferase 174 ± 230 IU/L, alkaline phosphatase 742 ± 751 IU/L, and gamma-glutamyltranspeptidase 1199 ± 1095 IU/L. Patients generally recovered over a period of 1-5 months, although high levels of alkaline phosphatase and gamma-glutamyltranspeptidase were still found in all patients examined after 6 months. Sixty-one patients (10.5%) died between 23 and 150 days after poisoning. Local cholestasis, inflammatory infiltration, and fibrosis developing into cirrhosis were found by liver biopsy.
Acute liver injury caused by PHMG-hydrochloride or PHMG in combination with either ethanol or diethyl phthalate can be characterized as cholestatic hepatitis with a severe inflammatory component causing high mortality.
INTRODUCTION: Poisoning is a common cause of emergency visits and hospital admission in Western countries. The purpose of this study was to assess the incidence and type of toxic exposures presenting to emergency medical facilities in Iceland. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study was prospective and included all patients with confirmed or suspected poisoning presenting to hospitals and rural medical centers providing emergency services in Iceland during the twelve-month period from April 2001 until March 2002. RESULTS: A total of 1,121 toxic exposures were documented representing an incidence of 3.91 cases per 1,000 inhabitants per year. The female to male ratio was 1.23. The majority of exposures (56.7%) occurred in the patient's home, 60% were deliberate, 72% had drugs and/or alcohol as their main cause, and 11% involved illicit drugs. Exposures to chemicals other than drugs were usually unintentional. CONCLUSION: Toxic exposures requiring emergency medical care are common in Iceland. Self-poisonings by ingestion of prescription drugs and/or alcohol accounted for the majority of cases.
Adulterated alcoholic beverages are legal alcoholic products that have been illicitly tampered with, for instance, by criminally diluting them with water, purposely putting them into new containers to conceal their true origin or adding toxic substances to manipulate the qualities of alcoholic beverages. The collection of cases at the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Iceland, which contains examples of each category of adulteration, is the basis of the present article. Especially noteworthy are cases involving the toxic substances methanol and/or ethylene glycol. Methanol has been added to legally produced wines to increase their "bite" and ethylene glycol to increase their sweetness. Adding these substances to wine has resulted in poisoning or death in other countries, but not in Iceland as far as is known.
According to the single distribution theory increases in the availability of alcoholic beverages in the general population are associated with increases in average consumption and increases in alcohol-related damage. If it can be demonstrated that advertising contributes to availability, perhaps in the form of what has been called social or subjective availability, then advertising could be considered an appropriate target of prevention. A 58-year ban on advertising of alcoholic beverages was lifted in Saskatchewan in 1983. Data on monthly sales of beer, wine and distilled spirits were examined for the years 1981 to 1987. Box-Jenkins time series techniques were used to estimate the statistical relationship between the policy change and volume of sales of alcoholic beverages. The results revealed that sales of beer increased and sales of spirits decreased following the change in legislation that permitted alcohol advertising in Saskatchewan. The main finding is that there was no impact on wine and total alcohol sales from the introduction of alcohol advertising. Alcohol advertising may have produced a substitution effect with respect to beer and spirits, but this was not predicted. This evaluation suggests that alcohol advertising is not a contributory force that influences the overall level of alcohol consumption. The place of advertising in the single distribution theory remains not proven, and the place of advertising as an instrument of public policy with respect to the prevention of alcohol-related damage remains in question.
In Sweden, alcohol abstention has increased over the last 20 years and consumption has recently decreased after a peak in 2004. To understand the dynamics of these trends the present study aims at estimating age, period and cohort (APC) effects on trends in alcohol use prevalence as well as overall and beverage-specific volume of drinking over the last three decades.
APC analysis of seven cross-sectional surveys from 1979 to 2011 was conducted using cross-classified random effects models (CCREMs) by gender. The nationally representative samples comprised 77,598 respondents aged 16-80 years. Outcome measures were 30-day prevalence of alcohol use and overall as well as beverage-specific alcohol volume.
Trends in prevalence, overall and beverage-specific volume were significantly affected by APC. The period effects of prevalence and overall volume show a small decline after an increase up to the year 2005. Mean beer and wine volume levelled off after a peak in 2005 and volume of spirits drinking decreased constantly. Predicted alcohol prevalence rates in male cohorts (1945-1985) remained generally at the same level, while they declined in post-World War II female generations. Results point to high overall and beverage-specific consumption among cohorts born in the 1940s, 1950s and 1980s.
High consuming cohorts of the 1940-1950s were key in rising consumption up to 2005. Progression through the life course of these cohorts, a decrease in prevalence and drinking volume in successive cohorts seem to have contributed to the recent downward trend in alcohol use in Sweden.