Vietnam man dies of methanol poisoning

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A methanol poisoning victim receives treatment at Bach Mai Hospital in Hanoi / PHOTO COURTESY OF LAO DONG

A 32-year-old man died of methanol poisoning in Hanoi Monday after drinking rice wine for four days as part of the Lunar New Year revelry, Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reported.

Dr. Nguyen Dam Chinh of Bach Mai Hospital's poison control center was quoted as saying that the victim, who belonged to Thanh Tri District, was hospitalized Sunday with massive accumulation of acid in the blood, multiple organ failure, and high pulse rate.

He died the next day.

Chinh said methanol in alcoholic drinks, when ingested in large quantities, is metabolized into corrosive formic acid.

Once the metabolism occurs, the fatality rate is high, and even if a patient is saved, they suffer complications like blindness and kidney failure, he said.

The man was among four alcohol poisoning cases admitted to Chinh’s center since New Year’s Eve, according to the newspaper.

Dr. Pham Due, the director of the center, warned that the number of methanol poisoning cases is likely to increase this month as people continue to hold New Year parties.

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