Table 4.

General principles in the treatment of alcohol intoxicationsa

Gastric lavage, induced emesis, or use of activated charcoal to remove alcohol from gastrointestinal tract needs to be initiated within 30 to 60 min after ingestion of alcohol
Administration of ethanol or fomepizole to delay or prevent generation of toxic metabolites needs to be initiated while sufficient alcohol remains unmetabolized measurement of blood alcohol concentrations and/or serum osmolality can be helpful
Dialysisb (hemodialysis > continuous renal replacement therapy > peritoneal dialysis) helpful in removing unmetabolized alcohol and possibly toxic metabolites and delivering base to patient to ameliorate metabolic acidosis
  • a Methods used in the treatment of methanol, ethylene glycol, and diethylene glycol intoxication. Methods may also be used for treatment of selected cases of severe propylene glycol intoxication.

  • b Dialysis can be used in treatment of severe isopropanol intoxication. Dialysis is effective in removal of ethanol but not usually used in treatment of alcoholic ketoacidosis.