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Can alcohol poisoning have any complications?

Complications from alcohol poisoning, which occurs when high quantities of alcohol are consumed in one session, include coma and death. The lethal dose for alcohol is about .35 to .40 percent, or about five times the legal limit (0.08) in most states. However, death can occur from alcohol poisoning at lower levels, especially for women. For a 120-pound man or woman drinking very quickly, it would only take eight to 10 drinks in an hour to reach the lethal level.

This content originally appeared on HealthyWomen.org.

Alcohol overdose can be fatal. Excessive consumption of alcohol can cause vomiting because it irritates the stomach, and a life-threatening complication of alcohol poisoning is asphyxiating, or choking on, vomit. Alcohol also suppresses your gag reflex, which can leave your body unable to stop you from choking when you vomit, especially if you lose consciousness. Because alcohol also slows breathing, there is danger of inhaling vomit into the lungs and causing asphyxiation, a fatal stoppage of lung function. These kinds of complications can also lead to permanent brain damage into the future.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.