Patients with alcohol in their blood are less likely to die from head injuries, according to a new study in Archives of Surgery, a JAMA/Archives journal.
The researchers found that the patients who tested positive for alcohol were less likely to die than patients who had no alcohol in their bloodstream. They were also generally younger and had less severe injuries. But patients who had drunk alcohol did suffer more medical complications during their stay in the hospital.
In the study, Ali Salim and his colleagues from the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles looked at 38,019 patients with moderate to severe head injuries. The authors note that it is not clear how ethanol might reduce the risk of death from head injuries, with animal studies showing contradictory results. While several animal studies do show some beneficial effects of having a low level of alcohol in the blood, including a higher chance of survival, these benefits are lost at higher alcohol levels. And other studies actually show alcohol being associated with reduced survival.
Of course, alcohol increases the risk of getting injured in the first place, and the authors of the study point out that they looked at the mortality of patients already in hospital. But head injuries are becoming more common, especially among soldiers. The study raises the possibility of a new treatment for head injuries: in the future, perhaps doctors could save your life by administering a healthy dose of alcohol.
Personally I often have a headache the next day after drinking, I think it's from dehydration, and no matter how much water I consume the headache doesn't go away until the following day. My thought is that if you get a head injury with alcohol in your system your head which would naturally gain water from the trauma (severe injury sometimes require drilling into the cranium to relieve the fluid pressure), is blocked or the swelling is 'refilling' the water lost from alcohol. It might be incorrect but most people believe that when a drunk driver crashes into a sober driver it's the drunk one who escapes unharmed. It's common in car crashes for the cause of death to be from brain swelling.
Last week I hit three people with my car: a hobo, a drunk, and a baby. Which one died? The hobo, of course.
Being drunk delays your body's tendency to tense up at impending trama. We all know from falling babies that being limp (and flexable) means that force is spread throughout your body, causing less trama to any one area.
A drunk likely did not tense up as impact arrived. Thus his head moved more fluidly with the impact, causing, on average, less brain trama than a sober person.
Try it sometime. Have two football players sac you. With one, tense up against the blow. On the other, blindfold yourself and try to be "ragdoll" loose. The tense one will come with many more circling birdies around you head.
Great strategy. Always drive drunk, just in case you might have an accident.
Balat, a UNESCO-protected district on Istanbul’s Golden Horn waterway, was once one of the most prestigious areas of the city. A century and a half ago, it was home to a merchant community of Turks, Jews, Greeks and Armenians. By the 1990s, its crowded streets had been largely left to poor migrants from the east and Gypsies, also known as Roma