Metabolische Ursachen von Bewusstseinsstörungen

Translated title of the contribution: Metabolic encephalopathies


A wide variety of metabolic disorders may cause global cerebral dysfunction, so-called metabolic encephalopathy. Several pathophysiological mechanisms are involved. Clinical features are usually nonspecific and can range from subtle cognitive difficulties to loss of consciousness and sleep-like coma. Physical examination should focus on mental status, cranial nerve function, motor abnormalities, and features of autonomic instability. Basic laboratory results may point to the underlying cause; however, if inconclusive, cerebral imaging is strongly indicated. The most frequent causes of metabolic encephalopathy are electrolyte abnormalities, hypo- and hyperglycemia, adrenal and thyroidal endocrinopathies, as well as septic, hepatic, uremic, and Wernicke’s encephalopathy.
Translated title of the contributionMetabolic encephalopathies
Original languageGerman
Title of host publicationIntensivmedizin und Notfallmedizin
Number of pages7
Publication date2010
ISBN (Print)0039000901420
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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