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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Energy Drinks Rising Concern

Drugs and alcohol on their own can be extremely dangerous, add an energy drink to the picture and they could become lethal. Between 2007 and 2011 the number of emergency room visits involving energy drinks doubled, with more than 20,000 emergency room visits, according to a new government report.

The believed cause in the spike is due the popularity of energy drinks on college campuses, and in bars and convenience stores, according to ABC News.

The report, from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), found most cases involved teens or young adults. SAMHSA calls consumption of energy drinks a “rising public health problem.” The drinks can cause insomnia and:
  • headaches
  • seizures
  • fast heartbeat
  • nervousness
About 42 percent of emergency room cases in 2011 involved energy drinks combined with alcohol or drugs such as Adderall or Ritalin.

 “A lot of people don’t realize the strength of these things. I had someone come in recently who had drunk three energy drinks in an hour, which is the equivalent of 15 cups of coffee,” American College of Emergency Physicians spokesperson Howard Mell, an ER physician outside of Cleveland, told ABC News. “Essentially he gave himself a stress test and thankfully he passed. But if he had a weak heart or suffered from coronary disease and didn’t know it, this could have precipitated very bad things.”
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