Doctors have reported the first known case of a woman who urinates alcohol.
The never-before-seen condition effectively turned her bladder into a microbrewery.
A woman who urinates alcohol without having consumed any is the first person to be diagnosed with “urinary auto-brewery syndrome”.
The condition is caused by yeast in the bladder, which ferments sugar in urine to produce alcohol.
The unusual case has been published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Discovery of the bladder microbrewery
The condition was discovered by doctors at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Presbyterian Hospital.
They were examining a 61-year-old woman, suffering from liver cirrhosis and diabetes, for placement on the liver transplant waitlist.
Those two illnesses are often associated with alcoholism and heavy alcohol use, but the woman claimed to rarely drink alcohol.
But doctors were left baffled because her urine tests for alcohol were all positive.
Then, the doctors noted that two substances produced by the breakdown of alcohol and her blood tested negative for alcohol, so she didn’t report feeling drunk or intoxicated.
This is when they discovered that the woman’s bladder had become colonized with a yeast, closely related to brewer’s yeast.
First case of bladder fermentation syndrome ever
The yeast produced alcohol and the woman’s bladder had acted like a micro brewery.
The woman’s urine contained high amounts of sugar due to her diabetes.
In combination with the yeast that had colonized her bladder, the conditions were ideal for fermentation and the production of alcohol.
The doctor explains: “I think the biggest reason for the patient to develop this condition is her poorly controlled diabetes because the bladder environment with high levels of glucose is definitely an optimistic condition for the growth and activity of the yeast. And diabetes itself is also known to cause immune dysfunction, which should also contribute to this resilient yeast colonization in the bladder in this case. ”
The woman is the first case of “urinary auto-brewery syndrome” or “bladder fermentation syndrome,” although the condition has already been documented in the digestive system several times. Again, learn how to detox your liver here. [Annals, BMJ, IFLScience]