Daily Mail: Man partially blinded after sleeping face down while under the influence of alcohol

February 12, 2024  18:10

A 44-year-old man who went to the emergency room in Puzi, Taiwan, was diagnosed with eye muscle paralysis and ischemic optic neuropathy (loss of vision due to optic nerve damage) in his left eye. The Daily Mail reports that this was most likely due to sleeping face down while  under the influence of alcohol.

The 44-year-old patient went to Taiwan's Chang Gung Memorial Hospital with complaints of pain and loss of vision in his left eye. He reported that he had taken an insomnia medication and consumed a large amount of alcoholic beverages the previous day, after which he lost consciousness for three hours. Upon awakening, the man realized that he had lost the ability to see in his left plasma.

Doctors were able to determine that the patient had fallen asleep in a position in which there was prolonged pressure on the damaged eye. This caused paralysis of the eye muscles and proptosis - the eyeball began to fall out of the orbit. Detailed examination revealed hemorrhagic edema of the conjunctiva and retina. Intraocular pressure, however, remained normal.

The medical team discovered that the pressure on the eye had caused rupture of the blood vessels that lie just beneath the transparent surface of the eye. The consequence of prolonged orbital compression was ischemic optic neuropathy - loss of vision due to damage to the optic nerve due to insufficient blood supply.

It is known that the patient was treated with high-dose systemic glucocorticoids to restore vision. However, the ability to see with the left eye was not restored.

It is noted that this condition occurs in people infrequently. In the medical community it is called "Saturday night retinopathy", which indicates that there is an increased risk of this type of injury while under the influence of alcohol.

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