Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Mixed Drinks

As we're all swigging champange tomorrow night in celebration of the New Year, be sure not to follow it with an Antabuse chaser.  A few months ago we had a chronic drinker who imbibed while on the medication designed to treat alcoholism, and experienced a nasty reaction with a heart rate in the 130s, low BP, altered mental status and vomiting so severe that he required intubation to protect his airway.  Doesn't sound like my idea of a good time.

And speaking of bad times, I've yet to understand occasional drunks in the ER.  Our regulars, I know, see the ER as their second home and many are operating under the "three hots and a cot" philosophy.  I get people who push their limits, end up overdoing it, and learn their lesson after a night in the ER (though I still think it's the result of bad friends not looking out for each other).  What I don't get is the group that decides to get violently drunk every couple months.  They don't like coming in, and we certainly don't like having them take up space, so nobody wins.  

No comments: