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Pediatr Clin North Am. 1986 Apr;33(2):311-23.

The alcohols: ethanol, methanol, isopropanol, ethylene glycol.


More than 6 per cent of poisonings involve alcohols and glycols, reflecting their availability in a wide range of household products, including aftershave, brake fluid, gas line antifreeze, model airplane fuel, mouthwash, rubbing alcohol, and windshield washing solution. Diagnosis involves recognition of an osmolal gap and variable degrees and delays in development of an anion gap metabolic acidosis. Therapeutic modalities are similar for methanol and ethylene glycol, both cases requiring ethanol-blocking of alcohol dehydrogenase and hemodialysis. More often, treatment of ethanol and isopropanol poisoning is limited to supportive care.

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