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 Alcohol Intolerance

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mistylalonde

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PostSubject: Alcohol Intolerance   Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:05 pm

Hello, I've recently been diagnosed with IIH, but I have been having issues with consuming alcohol for about 2 years now. I just thought I'd see if anyone else has had these symptoms after drinking (even a sip) of any kind of alcohol:
- Heart rate increases
- Instant pounding headache
- Red splotchy face
- Hot flash
- Lips tingling

These symptoms only last a few minutes and usually reside, but I usually stop drinking alcohol once this happens. The only alcohol that has not effected me as much is a polish vodka called luksusowa. I have had the symptoms listed above while drinking this vodka occasionally but usually I have no issues with it. 

For the longest time, I have just figured that I was allergic to alcohol, but now I'm wondering if it has something to do with my IIH.
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medmisfit
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PostSubject: Re: Alcohol Intolerance   Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:38 pm

You may have developed an allergy to alcohol separate from IIH, but I know many members get an instant headache or worsening of symptoms if they drink. It may partially depend on your treatment and medications, but alcohol is a diuretic and affects fluid levels at the very least. I personally wasn't able to drink any alcohol before my IIH was controlled, but seem to tolerate certain types of alcohol now.

If you'd like to continue drinking it, I would follow up with your primary care physician just to be safe.
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Sophiasmom
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PostSubject: Re: Alcohol Intolerance   Sat Sep 16, 2017 5:05 pm

alcohol is an organic solvent and dissolves cell membranes.  it is a poison, essentially.  I stopped drinking it when I was 23, once I realized what it was.  re-read your list of symptoms after drinking it and realize what you are describing: poisoning.  some people can tolerate it and some can't at all.  if I have just one sip I turn into a zombie.  some types of alcohol contain tyramine, like red wine, and you are describing tyramine poisoning with the sudden headache.

it is a characteristic of people who are chemically sensitive to also be intolerant to alcohol.  I have known many people on these boards and those who have completed the QEESI test have all been positive for chemical sensitivity.  it seems to me that chemical sensitivity is part of IIH, whether most of us here realize it or not.  we are all environmentally sensitive in one way or another, but I suspect that our sensitivity to chemicals plays a role in the IIH.  keep in mind this is all just my theories about it after observing us for years.  but some develop IIH after exposure to certain medications.  what if a pesticide we are exposed to but can't prove it, does the same thing?  the illness model for medication induced IIH and that for MCS are the same.  anyway, all that to say that I think there probably is a relationship between IIH and alcohol intolerance.  I just don't know exactly what it is.
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