Inhalant-Related Psychiatric Disorders Follow-up

Updated: Feb 19, 2019
  • Author: Guy E Brannon, MD; Chief Editor: Ana Hategan, MD, FRCPC  more...
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Follow-up

Further Outpatient Care

Therapy should include interventions such as a 12-step program or chemical dependency counseling, cognitive behavior therapy, or rational-emotive therapy.

Treatment may become more difficult for chronic inhalant abusers since the severity of brain injury progresses as abuse continues. Therefore, long-term therapy may be necessary. [24]

Continued pharmacotherapy may be indicated.

Patients may need to join Alcoholics Anonymous.

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Further Inpatient Care

Patients who represent a danger to themselves or to others, are gravely disabled, or are medically unstable require inpatient care, even if involuntary measures are needed.

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Inpatient & Outpatient Medications

Continued pharmacotherapy depends on the diagnosis and what medications were started in the hospital.

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Transfer

Transfer to a medical/surgical hospital may be necessary.

If legal problems develop, transfer to prison, jail, or a juvenile detention center may be necessary.

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Deterrence/Prevention

Educating students, educators, parents, those who abuse inhalants, and the community in general may help prevent further abuse and decrease experimentation with inhalants.

Early identification of the problem may help prevent continued abuse.

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Complications

Complications may include the following:

  • Social problems

  • Difficulty at work

  • Psychosis

  • Dementia

  • Anxiety

  • Mood disorders

  • Delirium

  • Legal problems

  • Death

  • Visual problems

  • Decreased coordination

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Arrhythmias

  • Violence or aggression

  • Confusion or impaired judgment

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Prognosis

The prognosis is fair if inhalants are used short-term.

The prognosis is poor if inhalants are used long-term.

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Patient Education

See the list below:

Family education

See the list below:

  • If you suspect someone is huffing, call 911 immediately. Attempt to keep the patient calm.

  • Contact the poison control center for information if no emergency exists.

  • Inform the physician of the source of the inhalant (eg, gasoline, glue)

  • Children and adolescents need to be taught the purpose of household products, the proper use of the products, and precautions in the use of the products. Review the risk and consequences of abusing the household products.

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