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Alcoholic vagal neuropathy: recovery following prolonged abstinence

PainSci » bibliography » Tan et al 1984

Two pages on PainSci cite Tan 1984: 1. Can Massage Therapy Cause Nerve Damage?2. Can neck massage stimulate the vagus nerve? For better or worse? (Member Post)

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

Cardiac vagal reflexes were studied in 11 alcoholic subjects, 1 to 6 weeks after withdrawal and again after up to 27 months of continued abstinence. On initial investigation six subjects had vagal neuropathy. On the second occasion only two subjects had vagal neuropathy and significant improvement was seen in the total patient group with regard to heart rate responses to standing, Valsalva's manoeuvre and atropine infusion. Vagal neuropathy in alcoholics may be reversible with abstinence and/or improved nutrition.

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