Potent Potables: Examining Acute and Chronic CT and MR Imaging Patterns of Ethanol and Methanol Poisoning

V.S. Yedavalli, P.S. Chowdhry, V. Bachchav, and A. Patil

View Article on Neurographics Website

Date of Activity Release: Aug. 1, 2018
Date of Activity Expiration: Aug. 1, 2021

Target Audience:
Intended for neuroradiologists and neuroradiology trainees with varying degrees of experience.

Learning Objective:
To understand the incidence and prevalence of alcohol toxicity and to elucidate the CT and MR features of acute and chronic forms of both ethanol and methanol toxicity while correlating with the physiology of each entity.

Alcohol intoxication can present in many forms, which leads to diagnostic dilemmas. In this review, we examined both CT and MR imaging of acute and chronic imaging patterns of ethanol and methanol toxicity. In acute ethanol intoxication, we delineated imaging findings of Wernicke encephalopathy, Marchiafava-Bignami disease, osmotic demyelination syndrome, and acute hepatic encephalopathy, with attention to characteristic CT and MR imaging features of each entity. We similarly illustrated distinguishing imaging characteristics of acute methanol intoxication. We also delved into chronic ethanol poisoning by focusing on chronic acquired hepatic encephalopathy and seizurelike syndromes. Finally, we elucidated CT and MR imaging features of chronic methanol poisoning because it can manifest as multiple sclerosis mimics. In addition to detailing the distinct imaging features, we also correlated these entities with their respective physiologies, and, in doing so, we hope to achieve accurate diagnosis for the betterment of patient care.

Commercial Support
No commercial support was received for this activity.

Credit Designation Statement

The American Society of Neuroradiology is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The American Society of Neuroradiology designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Method of Physician Participation:
Each participant will review the corresponding Neurographics article located at Upon completion, each physician will complete and pass a post-test with a score of at least 80% to receive a CME certificate.

All individuals in control of content have disclosed the following relevant financial relationships. All of these relationships were treated as a conflict of interest, and have been resolved (C7 SCS 6.1-6.2, 6.5)

Authors have no relevant financial relationships.





Barton Branstetter 

Editor in Chief

None, N/A

Adam Flanders

Deputy Editor

Royalties, Lippincott Williams and Wilkins

Robert Quencer 

Consulting Editor

None, N/A

Mark Mullins

Associate Editor

Non-remunerative position, AUR6

Meng Law

Associate Editor

Stockholder, Clinical Imaging

Edward Escott

Associate Editor

Grant, Atherysys, Inc.; Royalties, Thieme Medical Publishers

Scott Faro

Associate Editor

None, N/A

Tina Young Poussaint

Associate Editor

None, N/A

Dheeraj Ghandi

Associate Editor

Grant, Arstasis, Axera Inc.; Consultant, Covidien, EV3

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