What are the neurologic signs and symptoms of methanol toxicity?

Updated: Nov 05, 2018
  • Author: Kalyani Korabathina, MD; Chief Editor: Tarakad S Ramachandran, MBBS, MBA, MPH, FAAN, FACP, FAHA, FRCP, FRCPC, FRS, LRCP, MRCP, MRCS  more...
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Answer

Initially, the symptoms of methanol intoxication are similar to those of ethanol intoxication, often with disinhibition and ataxia. Following a latent period, patients may develop headache, nausea, vomiting, or epigastric pain. In later stages, drowsiness may rapidly progress to obtundation and coma.

Seizures may occur, generally as a complication of the metabolic derangement or as a result of damage to the brain parenchyma.

Cases of axonal polyneuropathy in association with chronic exposure have been reported. [15] Further, motor neuron disease resembling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis has been documented in a case report. [16] It is likely that neuropathies and spinal cord dysfunction are underestimated.


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