Home HealthTopics Health Centers Reference Library Research
Join us on Facebook Join us on Facebook Share on Facebook

Addiction and Substance Abuse

Loss of memory

05/31/2004

Question:

what about repeated falls and hitting of the head on things while a person is drunk.. and never remebering even when sober? please help answer why not just causes.. sincerely

Answer:

Alcohol withdrawal is not related to memory loss.  Alcohol withdrawal refers to the symptoms that may occur when a person who has been consuming alcohol stops drinking.  An individual can experience a "blackout", which is a period of severe amnesia for their behavior during the drinking episode.  This lapse in memory can last for a period of hours to days.  They may not be able to recall their conversations or behaviors. These blackouts are usually evident late in the course of the illness.

  There is considerable evidence of the toxic effect of alcohol on the brain.  In cases of chronic alcohol use, Wernicke Korsakoff Syndrome can develop as a result of thiamine deficiency.  With this condition, there can be a profound loss of intermediate memory.

For more information:

Go to the Addiction and Substance Abuse health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Deborah L Hoy, CNS Deborah L Hoy, CNS
Clinical Instructor at the College of Nursing
College of Nursing
The Ohio State University