Treatment of the alcohol intoxications: ethylene glycol, methanol and isopropanol

Curr Opin Nephrol Hypertens. 2000 Nov;9(6):695-701. doi: 10.1097/00041552-200011000-00017.


Intoxications with ethylene glycol, methanol, and isopropanol are among the most common ingestions, in the treatment of which a nephrologist plays an important role. These three substances have the ideal characteristics for intervention by hemodialysis, and the three parent compounds and their metabolites are readily dialyzable. Two of the three substances, ethylene glycol and methanol, are metabolized to more toxic substances, so that an early treatment strategy that removes the parent compound or blocks its metabolism can prevent the development of many of the adverse events that are often seen in these ingestions. Fomepizole, an inhibitor of alcohol dehydrogenase, slows the metabolism of these substances and is now approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for use in ethylene glycol intoxication. The present review addresses recent advances in the diagnosis and treatment of intoxication with ethylene glycol, methanol and isopropanol.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • 2-Propanol / poisoning*
  • Alcoholic Intoxication / physiopathology*
  • Alcoholic Intoxication / therapy*
  • Ethylene Glycol / poisoning*
  • Humans
  • Methanol / poisoning*
  • Renal Dialysis


  • Ethylene Glycol
  • 2-Propanol
  • Methanol