Blood Alcohol Level
Blood alcohol concentration; Blood alcohol content
Measure of alcohol in the blood.
Blood alcohol level (BAL) is typically expressed as milligrams or grams of ethanol per deciliter (e.g., 100 mg/dL or 0.10 g/dL). A level of 20–30 mg/dL typically results from the ingestion of one to two drinks. One drink corresponds to 340 mL (12 oz.) of beer, 115 mL (4 oz) of wine, and 43 mL (1.5 oz) of a shot. Blood alcohol levels as low as 20–80 mg/dL can lead to decreased inhibitions and decreased cognitive and motor performance, while levels of 300–400 mg/dL can lead to coma or death. Blood alcohol levels typically correlate inversely with cognitive and motor performance (i.e., as blood alcohol levels increase, cognitive and motor performance decrease). Specifically, increased blood alcohol levels correlate with slower reaction time and inversely correlate with frontal executive function. The tendency to underestimate one’s own blood alcohol level seems to pose...
References and Readings
- Harrison’s Online – Harrison’s principles of internal medicine (16th edn.). Chapter 372: Alcohol and alcoholism.Google Scholar