Wet Brain Syndrome: Signs, Symptoms and Treatment

One medication that will always be prescribed for wet brain treatment is thiamine, or vitamin B1, supplements. This medication can be prescribed through oral means or can be injected intravenously sober house or intramuscularly into the body. Most patients receive thiamine supplements two to three times a day. The wet brain treatment continues until clinical improvements cease.

However, the typical pattern that constitutes wet brain is the development of Wernicke encephalopathy followed by Korsakoff’s psychosis. Wet brain, or Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome caused by alcohol use, is a type of brain damage caused by low levels of thiamine. Also called vitamin B1, thiamine is an essential nutrient for brain health and has severe impacts on the brain when deficiencies occur. While thiamine deficiencies can occur from starvation, they are often caused by heavy alcohol use.

Treating Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome

Even though the negative effects of drinking and alcoholism as a health condition have been widely portrayed in media and everywhere else, not much impact has been felt in reality. Everyone’s experience with addiction is different, and a one-size-fits-all approach to treatment is not the answer. At Synergy Recovery, we treat you as an individual with unique needs.

Once a person has been diagnosed with end stage alcoholism, life expectancy can be as limited as six months. If you or a loved one suffers from wet brain syndrome or needs help treating alcohol addiction, call Asheville Recovery Center. We recognize that addiction is a complex issue and that’s why we created a secure and caring atmosphere for compassionate and non-judgmental recovery. Our team of skilled professionals can identify the signs of wet brain syndrome, form a list of potential treatment options, and create a personalized plan to help with withdrawal symptoms and relapse prevention.

Wernicke Korsakoff Syndrome Treatment and Diagnosis Criteria

Depending on the time of diagnosis, a patient may experience one or the other. The effects of Wernicke’s encephalopathy invariably lead to Korsakoff’s psychosis, and treatment of the latter often hinges on the timing of diagnosing the former. Some of the most common symptoms of Wernicke’s encephalopathy include memory loss, confusion, abnormal eye movements, double vision, loss of balance, and poor muscle function. Severe cases of this condition can include tachycardia (rapid heart rate), muscle atrophy, lowered body temperature, and can also lead to coma or even death.

These therapies help the person understand the sources of their alcohol addiction and develop better coping mechanisms to deal with cravings and stress. Group therapy helps the person develop a network of peers that can support the individual’s focus on maintaining sobriety. Group and family therapy help to build new relationships and rebuild existing relationships, so the individual has additional support once they leave the program. Other symptoms when a person develops Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, they experience loss of mental capacity, motor function, and eye movement or vision. People with Korsakoff psychosis often experience confabulation, a condition in which someone subconsciously makes new memories to fill in gaps in the memory. Someone with confabulation will often repeat these made-up memories, thinking they are real.

Who is Most at Risk of Developing Wet Brain?

For women, heavy alcohol use is considered drinking more than three drinks in one day or more than seven drinks in a week. Early diagnosis and treatment can reverse some of the symptoms of Wernicke’s encephalopathy, which is the first stage of the condition. Administering high doses of thiamine is the first course of action when treating wet brain because the brain severely lacks the nutrient.

  • Group therapy helps the person develop a network of peers that can support the individual’s focus on maintaining sobriety.
  • Unfortunately, many people with AUD do not disclose the full extent of their alcohol use to their primary care providers.
  • While the general population is less likely to develop wet brain syndrome (around 1-2%), individuals who frequently consume alcohol have a higher risk, with estimated prevalence rates of 12-14%.
  • The best way to find out if you have wet brain or Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome is to see a doctor.

Raising awareness around eating disorders is essential for breaking the stigma and allowing people to seek treatment. If you struggle with chronic alcoholism, know that you aren’t alone, and it’s not too late to make a change.We offer a combination of both scientifically proven and evidence-based holistic treatment methods. Heart rate, eye movements, body temperature, and even a person’s walk could all signal a doctor to a possible thiamine deficiency.