To impress his work colleagues, a 36-year-old man drinks 12 energy drinks in ten minutes. Shortly after, he felt unwell, before knowing that he was suffering from acute pancreatitis. What are the risks of having so many drinks of this type in such a short time? Explanations from Dr Gérald Kierzek, emergency doctor and medical director of TipsForWomens.
While trying to impress his work colleagues, a 36-year-old man, called JS, almost died. He downed 12 energy drinks in ten minutes, before feeling unwell and actually developing acute pancreatitis. This mishap, reported by Dr. Bernard Hsu on his YouTube channel, almost turned into a tragedy. She asks about this type of drink.
What do energy drinks contain and what are their effects?
“This type of drink is mainly composed of caffeine and the amino acid taurine. Taken in large quantities, they trigger a hypertensive surge, tachycardia and they also have an effect on the metabolism of the liver and pancreas. details of the emblem by Dr. Gérald Kierzek. “Sometimes, some people mix them with alcohol, which creates an explosive cocktail.”
What happened to the 30-year-old after drinking all 12 cans?
In the context of JS’s anecdote, different symptoms developed after he ingested this large quantity of energy drink: burning in the back of his throat, difficulty breathing and pain in his chest.
The thirty-year-old, accustomed to excess caffeine, was not worried: he preferred to distract himself by playing a few games of video games. However, if humans regularly consume 900 mg of caffeine, it is in fact far too much for their body. “The European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) recommends not exceeding 400 mg of caffeine per day for a healthy adult, the equivalent of 3 cups of coffee per day. This dosage should not exceed 200 mg for pregnant or breastfeeding women.” recalls Dr. Gérald Kierzek.
Hyperglycemia detected in thirty-year-olds several days later
During the following days JS’s condition did not improve. On the contrary, his pain increases, he begins to vomit and becomes unable to eat or drink anything. After several days, he ended up going to the emergency room, where doctors found his blood sugar high, even though the drinks had been consumed several days earlier.
By carrying out various tests, they finally make the diagnosis: JS has acute pancreatitis. “Acute pancreatitis is an acute inflammation of the pancreas, usually caused by alcohol.” explains Dr. Kierzek. “It is a necrosis of the pancreas, which causes abdominal pain. It can subsequently cause septicemia, through superinfection, from which you can die,” concludes the doctor.
Treatment of severe pancreatic inflammation requires hospitalization. Patients are rehydrated abundantly using an infusion. Also, the goal of treatment is to relieve the symptoms of acute pancreatitis, particularly pain in the pancreas. Finding the cause of acute pancreatitis is essential in order to administer the most appropriate treatment to the patient. More information on our article dedicated to this disease.