Chronic Neurologic Effects of Alcohol

Nadia Hammoud, Joohi Jimenez-Shahed

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Chronic alcohol use induces silent changes in the structure and function of the central and peripheral nervous systems that eventually result in irreversible, debilitating repercussions. Once identified, nutritional supplementation and cessation measures are critical in preventing further neurologic damage. The proposed mechanisms of neuronal injury in chronic alcohol abuse include direct toxic effects of alcohol and indirect effects, including those resulting from hepatic dysfunction, nutritional deficiencies, and neuroinflammation. Clinical manifestations include cerebellar ataxia, peripheral neuropathy and Wernicke-Korsakoff encephalopathy. Continued exploration of the pathophysiologic mechanisms may lead to the discovery of early interventions that can prevent permanent neurologic injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-155
Number of pages15
JournalClinics in Liver Disease
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Alcohol
  • Alcoholic neuropathy
  • Ataxia
  • Cerebellar degeneration
  • Complications
  • Wernicke-Korsakoff encephalopathy


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