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Type: Journal article
Title: Alcohol intoxication may exacerbate the effects of blunt cranial trauma through changes in brain free magnesium levels
Author: Vink, R.
Byard, R.
Citation: Journal of Forensic Sciences, 2012; 57(4):979-982
Publisher: Amer Soc Testing Materials
Issue Date: 2012
ISSN: 0022-1198
Statement of
Robert Vink and Roger W. Byard
Abstract: Moderate to high levels of alcohol decrease brain intracellular free magnesium concentration, a factor known to be critical in brain injury. Phosphorus magnetic resonance spectroscopy was used to examine changes to brain free magnesium concentration after blunt cranial trauma in alcohol-intoxicated rats. Rats exposed acutely or chronically to alcohol sufficient to increase blood alcohol levels to between 150 and 350 mg/dL demonstrated a brain free magnesium level that was 20-50% less than in nonintoxicated animals (p < 0.01). After injury, brain free magnesium levels declined more rapidly and to a greater extent in alcohol-affected animals than in nonintoxicated control animals (p < 0.001). As both preinjury depletion of magnesium and degree of magnesium decline after brain injury have been associated with poor recovery, these findings suggest that moderate to severe alcohol intoxication may predispose the brain to a worse outcome by reducing brain free magnesium levels, both before and after injury.
Keywords: forensic science; alcohol; blunt cerebral trauma; traumatic brain injury; magnesium; intoxication; death
Rights: © 2012 American Academy of Forensic Sciences
RMID: 0020120565
DOI: 10.1111/j.1556-4029.2012.02108.x
Appears in Collections:Pathology publications

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