Alcohol delirium is an acute alcoholic psychosis, from Latin it is translated as insanity, or madness. Appears in the second stage of alcoholism and in the people it is called white fever , in conversation also patients use the phrase: "To catch a squirrel, squirrel."Psychosis is characterized by a gross and deep disorder of consciousness with the appearance of visual and auditory hallucinations, most often of a frightening nature. The patients are excited, aggressive and dangerous to others and themselves. White fever occurs after the termination of a long drinking-bout when the patient ends with alcohol, against the background of alcohol withdrawal.
Symptoms of white fever
- The patient may lose interest in alcohol and desire to get drunk.
- Mood swings - joy is replaced by depression and vice versa. The patient is so excited that he can not sit still.
- Tremors in the extremities.
- Sleep disturbances with anxiety, insomnia and nightmarish dreams. A newly awakened patient begins to see visual hallucinations, to hear non-existent sounds.
How to prevent a beginning psychosis? It's simple. Address in clinic, a hospital to the doctor-expert in narcology. Stop drinking. The doctor will prescribe a recovery course of cleansing therapy.
The attack of alcoholic delirium comes to the end of the day. At dusk, the patient begins to see images from small insects to snakes, rats, spiders and so on. There may be non-existent animals, things - devils, a network. The nature of the perception of all this can be similar to a film, that is, not voluminous. Patients are trying to disentangle themselves from nets, ropes, shake off themselves something, hammer into a corner or run away from a frightening experience.
Auditory hallucinations are various sounds, snatches of speech with threats to the patient. The patients talk to themselves, prove something. The nature of delusional experiences is different. Often this is nonsense jealousy. The alcoholic is jealous of his half, aggressively behaving himself and can even harm himself and others.
All inner experiences with alcoholic delirium, or white fever, are reflected in the patient's facial expressions. Depending on the nature of the experience, the patient's face may reflect an expression of horror, fear, confusion. Sometimes a patient, with tactile hallucinations, feels a foreign body in his mouth. He tries to pull it out, spit it out. More rarely, but olfactory hallucinations also occur. The patient clamps his nose to interrupt the perception of an unpleasant odor. The weakening of hallucinations occurs during the daytime.
Dangers of alcoholic delirium
Squirrel, or white fever is dangerous for the sick and for others, as we have already said. It is necessary to remove all stitching and cutting objects, to make sure that the patient does not throw himself out of the window. The patient loses orientation in space and may not find his home. Therefore, the patient should be treated in a psychiatric clinic, and not at home.
A prognostically very unfavorable feature is the exaggerated kind of psychosis( muttering).The patient, lying in bed, always mumbles to himself, feels himself, smoothes clothes and shakes off something from himself. People say that they are "offended".This is a very bad and reliable sign, indicating that the patient will soon die.
Consequences of the white fever
With alcoholic delirium, the work of the whole organism is disrupted. Uncontrollably increases the body temperature to 40 and more degrees, as well as blood pressure. The body is dehydrated, the heart rhythm is broken. The patient is shivering, he sweats, his eyes are yellow, his skin is pale. Characterized by an unpleasant specific smell from the patient.
With white fever the patient even remembers his hallucinations better than real events when he comes to himself. Difficulties in diagnosis are with mixed abuse of alcohol with psychotropic drugs. Alcoholic delirium occurs in the second and third stages of alcoholism, as we have already said, and against the background of the withdrawal syndrome.
The pathogenetic mechanism of white fever is the poisoning of the body with toxins and alcohol damage to the liver. In typical cases of psychosis, the mortality rate of patients is 15%.
First described by a Russian psychiatrist Korsakov SS in 1887. Polyneuritic alcoholic psychosis Korsakova appears in the third stage of alcoholism in 40-50 year old patients who have reached the use of cologne, lotion and technical spirits. Here, in the background of mental disorders, the peripheral nervous system is affected.
In the clinic of disease fixative amnesia. This is a memory disorder, when the patient immediately forgets everything that he was asked about. He can not remember and reproduce events, does not remember the names of others. Patients are anxious, timid, not oriented in space and time. At a subsequent stage of the disease, euphoria, a state of well-being, replaced by apathy and indifference. In patients, neurological disorders of sensitivity, tendon reflexes weaken and disappear.
Korsakovsky psychosis is characterized by a protracted nature and development of paresis, paralysis, which lead to disability of the patient. Until immobilization.
Treatment of alcoholic delirium
If we see that the case is for a sick person to develop alcoholic psychosis, then it is necessary to call an ambulance, which will hospitalize the patient in a psychiatric clinic or hospital. The first help with white fever is to put the patient in bed and hold it in this position. Attach ice to your head and give more to the patient, if possible. Calm the patient psychologically, you can give him some sedative or hypnotic.
How to treat white fever?
In the treatment of alcoholic delirium, detoxication and psychotropic drugs are used. Normalize metabolism and water-salt balance in the body of the patient with appropriate medications. Apply vitamins, nootropics, stimulants of cardiac and respiratory activity. Of the psychotropic drugs used haloperidol, Relanium, Seduxen, etc. Psychomotor agitation should be removed.
For the purification of blood and the removal of intoxication intravenously drip infusion of solutions of glucose, hemodez, hemosorption and reopolyglucin. An infusion of isotonic sodium chloride solution, utiniol, sodium thiosulfate is also made. Stimulate cardiac activity with cordyamine and corglitone. To prevent cerebral edema, use lasix, or furosemide. For general strengthening of the body and the nervous system, injections of large doses of B-1, 6, vitamins are used.
Treatment of patients with a diagnosis of white fever is performed in intensive care units. The acute period lasts from 2 to 8 days.