Learn About Alcoholic Ketoacidosis

What is the definition of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Alcoholic ketoacidosis is the buildup of ketones in the blood due to alcohol use. Ketones are a type of acid that form when the body breaks down fat for energy.

The condition is an acute form of metabolic acidosis, a condition in which there is too much acid in body fluids.

Save information for later
Sign Up
What are the alternative names for Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Ketoacidosis - alcoholic; Alcohol use - alcoholic ketoacidosis

What are the causes of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Alcoholic ketoacidosis is caused by very heavy alcohol use. It most often occurs in a malnourished person who drinks large amounts of alcohol every day.

What are the symptoms of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Symptoms of alcoholic ketoacidosis include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Agitation, confusion
  • Changed level of alertness, which may lead to coma
  • Fatigue, slow movements
  • Deep, labored, rapid breathing
  • Loss of appetite
  • Symptoms of dehydration, such as dizziness, lightheadedness, and thirst
Not sure about your diagnosis?
Check Your Symptoms
What are the current treatments for Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Treatment may involve fluids (salt and sugar solution) given through a vein. You may need to have frequent blood tests. You may get vitamin supplements to treat malnutrition caused by excess alcohol use.

People with this condition are usually admitted to the hospital, often to the intensive care unit (ICU). Alcohol use is stopped to help recovery. Medicines may be given to prevent alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

Who are the top Alcoholic Ketoacidosis Local Doctors?
Elite
Highly rated in
8
conditions

Curml

Lausanne, VD, CH 1000

Cristian Palmiere is in Lausanne, Switzerland. Palmiere is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis. He is also highly rated in 8 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Alcoholic Ketoacidosis, Diabetic Ketoacidosis, Hypothermia, and Anaphylaxis.

Elite
Highly rated in
3
conditions

Forensic Science SA

21 Divett Place 
Adelaide, SA, AU 5000

Chong Zhou is in Adelaide, Australia. Zhou is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis. He is also highly rated in 3 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Alcoholic Ketoacidosis, Diabetic Ketoacidosis, Hypothermia, and Giant Mammary Hamartoma.

 
 
 
 
Learn about our expert tiers
Learn more
Distinguished
Highly rated in
40
conditions

University Of Adelaide

Adelaide, SA, AU 

Roger Byard is in Adelaide, Australia. Byard is rated as a Distinguished expert by MediFind in the treatment of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis. He is also highly rated in 40 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, Hypothermia, Tabes Dorsalis, and Alcoholic Ketoacidosis.

What is the outlook (prognosis) for Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Prompt medical attention improves the overall outlook. How severe the alcohol use is, and the presence of liver disease or other problems, may also affect the outlook.

What are the possible complications of Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

This can be a life-threatening condition. Complications may include:

  • Coma and seizures
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding
  • Inflamed pancreas (pancreatitis)
  • Pneumonia
When should I contact a medical professional for Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

If you or someone else has symptoms of alcoholic ketoacidosis, seek emergency medical help.

How do I prevent Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?

Limiting the amount of alcohol you drink will help prevent this condition.

What are the latest Alcoholic Ketoacidosis Clinical Trials?
Match to trials
Find the right clinical trials for you in under a minute
Get started
What are the Latest Advances for Alcoholic Ketoacidosis?
Adult Shigatoxin-mediated hemolytic uremic syndrome masked by alcohol use and inflammatory bowel disease.
Tired of the same old research?
Check Latest Advances
Who are the sources who wrote this article ?

Published Date : April 24, 2021
Published By : David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

What are the references for this article ?

Finnell JT. Alcohol-related disease. In: Walls RM, Hockberger RS, Gausche-Hill RM, eds. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 142.

O'Connor PG. Alcohol use disorders. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 26th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 30.