The Weekly Mind Reader: Energy Drink Binge Leads to Liver Failure

by Denis Storey
January 19, 2024 at 10:05 AM UTC

The Primary Care Companion for CNS Disorders published a paper that suggests the use of trait mindfulness-based interventions might help reduce anxiety levels in students who present with severe problematic social media use.

The Primary Care Companion just published a case study that details how an energy drink binge can shut down the liver.

Liver Failure and Transplant After Excessive Energy Drink Consumption

A 21-year-old man suffered acute liver failure and cerebral edema after consuming multiple energy drinks during a prolonged video game streaming event. The energy drinks involved various brands, including Bang, Rockstar, and Full Throttle.

The patient, with a history of attention-deficit hyperactivity – as well as depressive and anxiety – disorders, required hospitalization, where medical professionals intubated him. After hemodialysis, the doctors performed an orthotopic liver transplant. 

The patient also reported a history of cannabis use and denied recent alcohol consumption but had consumed several highly caffeinated beverages over the previous 24 hours. Despite being a unique case with no long-term energy drink history, the patient’s severe liver failure highlighted the potential risks associated with acute, excessive energy drink consumption.

With the growing popularity of energy drinks, especially among adolescents and young adults, the potential health risks associated with their consumption have attracted more attention. While researchers typically associate caffeine toxicity with neurological symptoms, severe cases can cause organ dysfunction.

This report focuses on the role of niacin, a component in energy drinks, in hepatotoxicity and acute hepatitis. The researchers sought out this case because of the absence of a prolonged energy drink consumption history, emphasizing the importance of considering substance use, including energy drinks, in incidents of acute liver failure.

The authors advocate for further investigation into the ingredients of energy drinks to better understand their health impacts and emphasize the need for a comprehensive substance use history in cases of acute hepatic injury.

IN OTHER PSYCHIATRY AND NEUROLOGY NEWS

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  • Early childhood adversity appears to accelerates brain development in preschool-aged children leading to a host of problems later in life.
  • Vice President Kamala Harris announced an additional $285 million in funding for schools to hire and train mental health counselors.
  • There is a growing body of evidence suggesting a positive correlation between psychedelic microdosing and improved mental well-being.
  • CYP2D6 phenotype does not seem to predict the occurrence of adverse drug reactions in patients with depressive disorders.

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