Volume 18, Issue 4 (October 1973)
Electrolyte Imbalance in Alcoholic Liver Disease
The forensic pathologist is confronted almost daily with instances of sudden and unexpected death in patients with an alcoholic history, who exhibit only disease of the liver at autopsy, often consisting solely of fatty metamorphosis, and whose blood contains little or no ethyl alcohol. The cause of death is usually certified as acute or chronic alcoholism or both, and on occasions includes the type of liver disease, but the exact mechanism(s) remain unknown. Some of those incriminated include hypoglycemia, subtle infection, seizures related to delirium tremens and various metabolic alterations from the diseased liver, including the “Hepatorenal Syndrome” [1–5].