Eyer et al identified risk factors for seizures or delirium tremens during alcohol withdrawal. These can help to identify a patient who may require more aggressive management. The author is from Medizinische Klinik of Technische Universitat Munchen.

Patient selection: alcohol withdrawal


Outcome: withdrawal seizures or delirium tremens


Risk factors for withdrawal seizures:

(1) withdrawal seizures as cause of admission

(2) history of prior detoxification admissions

(3) CIWA-Ar score > 15

(4) structural brain lesion(s)

(5) greater number of withdrawal episodes in the past


Risk factors for delirium tremens:

(1) hypokalemia (low serum potassium)

(2) previous history of withdrawal seizures or delirium tremens (complicated withdrawal)

(3) current medical disease

(4) withdrawal while blood alcohol concentration > 1 g/L

(5) greater number of drinks per day and more years of heavy drinking

(6) history of head injury

(7) older (set to >= 65 years of age in implementation)

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