Auto-brewery syndrome caused man to produce alcohol in his gut, act drunk

  
Via:  perrie-halpern  •  4 weeks ago  •  24 comments

Auto-brewery syndrome caused man to produce alcohol in his gut, act drunk
As strange as it sounds, experts believe the condition may be under-diagnosed.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


By   A. Pawlowski


For years, no one believed an apparently drunk man who said he didn’t drink any   alcohol .

He’d become prone to falls, displayed “brain fog and aggressive behavior” and was even arrested for suspicion of driving while intoxicated, all while swearing he hadn't touched a drop of booze.

His family, his doctors and police were convinced he was a closet drinker.

It happens when “gut disturbances,” including antibiotic use, allow certain fermenting fungi or bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract to grow unchecked. When a person then consumes carbs — like pizza, pasta, bread and soda — the legions of fermenting microbes dutifully turn the sugar in that food or drink into ethanol, leading to “extreme blood alcohol levels,”   research found .

The strange phenomenon was even featured in an episode of "Gray's Anatomy." It may sound amusing, but experts say the appearance of unexplained and random intoxication can have a profound effect on patients' lives and can lead to family, workplace and legal troubles.

Auto-brewery syndrome should be considered as a possibility in any patient who shows alcohol toxicity, but denies drinking alcohol, doctors at Richmond University Medical Center in New York wrote as they described the unnamed man’s case in   BMJ Open Gastroenterology .

The man's troubles started in 2011 after he began taking antibiotics for a thumb injury, they said. He’d always been healthy and active, but began to experience “very uncharacteristic” personality changes, along with   episodes of depression .

"He was unable to function and it was mainly after meals," Dr. Fahad Malik, co-author of the case report, told TODAY. "No one believed him."

A psychiatrist treated him with anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication. Then, police arrested him for DUI when his   blood alcohol concentration   measured 0.2 percent, or more than twice the legal limit and enough for most people to experience a blackout.

“The hospital personnel and police refused to believe him when he repeatedly denied alcohol ingestion,” the case report noted.

Things began to turn around when the man’s aunt heard about a similar case treated in Ohio. She bought a breathalyzer to keep track of his alcohol levels and urged him to get lab testing, which detected brewer’s yeast in his stool.

To confirm he had auto-brewery syndrome, the doctors in Ohio asked him to eat a carb-heavy meal, then monitored his blood alcohol levels, which indeed spiked after eight hours.

He felt better after a brief round of antifungal medication and a strict carb-free diet, but soon relapsed, leading to a serious fall. His blood alcohol levels were swinging wildly.

The man then sought help from doctors at Richmond University Medical Center, who gave him antifungal therapy that was successful for several weeks, with one setback.

“Unbeknownst to us, he ate pizza and drank soda while on this treatment, resulting in a severe ABS relapse,” the case report noted.

Finally, tests of his gastrointestinal secretions showed the fungal growth was gone. He began taking   probiotics   — microorganisms that promote the good bacteria in a person's digestive system — which helped to bring his gut flora back to normal, and his symptoms vanished. More than a year after this treatment, he has resumed eating a normal diet, the case report noted.

His doctors believe the antibiotics prescribed for his thumb injury triggered the condition by changing his gut microbiome and allowing “fungal overgrowth.”

As strange as it sounds, they believe auto-brewery syndrome is probably an under-diagnosed condition.


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Perrie Halpern R.A.
1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.    4 weeks ago

Do you think you have fallen victim to this?

 
 
 
KDMichigan
1.1  KDMichigan  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1    4 weeks ago

256

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.1.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  KDMichigan @1.1    4 weeks ago

LOL..

That is my namesake... Smeddly the dog. 

 
 
 
KDMichigan
1.1.2  KDMichigan  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.1.1    4 weeks ago

I can hear the wheeze at the end of the laugh now. jrSmiley_10_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
1.2  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1    4 weeks ago
Do you think you have fallen victim to this?

This is certainly an unusual affliction to stumble into...

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.2.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @1.2    4 weeks ago

Just when you think you have heard everything. 

It's a mixed blessing, free beer! 

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
1.2.2  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.2.1    4 weeks ago
It's a mixed blessing, free beer!

If you know about it and managed your diet it could certainly be seen as a boon. A slice of wonder bread around 3:00 in the afternoon and you're drunk by 7 without having to drink a six pack :)

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
1.3  Trout Giggles  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1    4 weeks ago
Do you think you have fallen victim to this?

No. All of my slurred speech and falls have been self-induced

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.3.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Trout Giggles @1.3    4 weeks ago

Yeah, I have to admit to that, too. 

 
 
 
dave-2693993
2  dave-2693993    4 weeks ago
Do you think you have fallen victim to this?

No, but I have had other conditions where probiotics have resolved the issues.

(wondering if anyone has an "herbal supplement" to induce this?)

 
 
 
Kathleen
2.1  Kathleen  replied to  dave-2693993 @2    4 weeks ago

Same here, yogurt and sauerkraut are good foods for probiotics.  

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Kathleen @2.1    4 weeks ago

Indeed! I thought of that, too

 
 
 
KDMichigan
2.1.2  KDMichigan  replied to  Kathleen @2.1    4 weeks ago
yogurt and sauerkraut are good foods for probiotics.  

Yogurt...bleh, Now the sauerkraut I make from my grandpa's recipe?

256

 
 
 
Kathleen
2.1.3  Kathleen  replied to  KDMichigan @2.1.2    4 weeks ago

I like sauerkraut, I put mine in a crockpot with pork ribs on low for 8 hours..

 
 
 
KDMichigan
2.1.4  KDMichigan  replied to  Kathleen @2.1.3    4 weeks ago

I gave someone some of my homemade kraut and they told me they ran it under water and rinsed it before cooking......they haven't gotten anymore.

 
 
 
Kathleen
2.1.5  Kathleen  replied to  KDMichigan @2.1.4    4 weeks ago

If you want, you can put the recipe up on the cookbook group. I would like to know how you make it. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1.6  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  KDMichigan @2.1.2    4 weeks ago
Now the sauerkraut I make from my grandpa's recipe?

Love sauerkraut!

 
 
 
†hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh
3  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh    4 weeks ago

I suffer from voluntary brewery syndrome

VBS

I follow the Bavarian purity law of 1516, Reinheitsgebot.

Water, barley and hops.

Ingest and then pee into a brita filter.

CHEERS

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh @3    4 weeks ago
I suffer from voluntary brewery syndrome

As if we didn't know.

 
 
 
†hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh
3.1.1  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.1    4 weeks ago

I think you are going to like it. My brew has a full head on it. Some people like it warm but i recommend chilling.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.2  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh @3.1.1    4 weeks ago
200.webp?cid=790b76114775fbc922207788f01 FRESH!!!!

 
 
 
Kathleen
4  Kathleen    4 weeks ago

That sounds like a bummer getting blamed for drinking when you didn’t have a drink. You need the good bacteria in your digestive system to keep you balanced. They say your gut is connected to your mental state.  Interesting for sure.

 
 
 
jungkonservativ111
5  jungkonservativ111    4 weeks ago

So if I load up on antibiotics and pizza I can be drunk all day? Dang, I've been buying all my alcohol from the stores like an idiot.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
5.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  jungkonservativ111 @5    4 weeks ago

See, what you can learn! Go forth and brew AND save money! LOL!

 
 
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