A 61-year-old man — with a history of home-brewing — stumbled into a Texas emergency room complaining of dizziness. Nurses ran a Breathalyzer test. And sure enough, the man's blood alcohol concentration was a whopping 0.37 percent, or almost five times the legal limit for driving in Texas.There was just one hitch: The man said that he hadn't touched a drop of alcohol that day. [...]
Other medical professionals chalked up the man's problem to "closet drinking." But Cordell and Dr. Justin McCarthy, a gastroenterologist in Lubbock, wanted to figure out what was really going on.So the team searched the man's belongings for liquor and then isolated him in a hospital room for 24 hours. Throughout the day, he ate carbohydrate-rich foods, and the doctors periodically checked his blood for alcohol. At one point, it rose 0.12 percent.Eventually, McCarthy and Cordell pinpointed the culprit: an overabundance of brewer's yeast in his gut.Sounds like an urban legend, but the article suggests that auto-brewery syndrome may be a real, albeit rare condition.