A woman found herself being accused of alcoholism by doctors after she began urinating alcohol.
The 61-year-old was diagnosed with cirrhosis, a condition that can be caused by alcohol abuse, and was added to a waiting list for a liver transplant, reports the Daily Mail .
The unnamed woman would have her urine tested and always tested positive leading two sets of doctors to believe she was hiding an addiction.
She went to see specialists at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre and they were able to diagnose bladder fermentation syndrome.
High levels of Candida glabrata, yeast naturally produced by the body, were accumulating in her bladder when she ate or drank sugar.
Tests showed the yeast was then fermenting and turning into alcohol in the patient’s bladder.
Because of this, the liver worked harder to eliminate it from her body every time she ate certain foods, which took its toll.
She was prescribed oral antifungals, to get rid of the yeast infection
The case report was revealed by medics from the University of Pittsburgh’s Presbyterian Hospital in Pennsylvania.
They said it showed ‘how easy it is to overlook signals that the syndrome may be present’ in some liver transplant patients.
They also want to raise awareness in doctors so that they can be more aware of the condition and then patients can avoid being mistaken for alcoholics.
Writing in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, the medics said: ‘Acquiring all of the data necessary to evaluate a transplant candidate is complicated because of the high stakes, time constraints, and workload of the persons acquiring the data.
Proper processing of data is even more difﬁcult— it is all too easy to order alcohol monitoring tests inconsistently, overlook discrepancies in the results, and allow bias to enter and persist in the decision-making process.
‘Standardised guidelines for abstinence monitoring laboratory interpretation are needed.’
By email@example.com (Emma Robertson)