Signs and Symptoms of Improper Detoxification

Signs and Symptoms of Improper Detoxification Signs and symptoms of improper detoxification can indicate a severe and potentially fatal reaction.

All detoxification processes involve some withdrawal symptoms, but the withdrawal signs can and should be managed and monitored for the comfort and safety of the patient. The symptoms vary by the type of drug the person used.


Withdrawal from alcohol can cause the patient to experience:

Opioid Drugs

Withdrawal from opiates, like heroin, can be like a severe case of the flu, only many times worse. The signs can include:

Benzodiazepines (Benzos)

These drugs, which include Valium, Librium, Xanax, and many other prescription medications), can cause these withdrawal symptoms:


The process of your body adjusting to the absence of meth after long-term usage can involve:

Proper Management of Addiction Withdrawal Symptoms

The National Institutes of Health and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSA) provide guidelines for the correct management of withdrawal or detoxification from alcohol and other drugs in their “Treatment Improvement Protocols” publication. The book sets the standard of care that treatment facilities should use for their patients.

Detox Protocols

Treatment centers should perform a thorough physical examination and run a battery of blood tests, including drug screen panels, on all patients. A detailed history is also essential.

Many patients need medication to manage the side effects of withdrawing from drugs or alcohol. If a patient is young, in good health, and has not experienced previous reactions to withdrawal, that person might be able to detox without medications provided they are under constant observation. Detox is unpredictable and seizures can happen even with the fittest patient.

Since many people who seek treatment for addiction have a complicated history of substance abuse with heavy usage of alcohol consumption and other drugs, one can expect moderate to severe withdrawal side effects. These require a high level of medical care, including vigilant monitoring and the use of medications. Convulsions and other detox symptoms should receive immediate medical treatment.

Remember, improperly detoxing can kill you. Patients going through detoxification should receive:

Avoiding Improper Detoxification

A person trying to beat an addiction to alcohol or other drugs might try detoxification methods to get the substance out of the body and remove the dependency on the drug. One should always follow these guidelines to avoid improper detoxification:

Insist on detailed information from facilities that claim to provide supervision and medical professionals during detox. Some centers do not have doctors on staff and are dangerously lax about watching over their patients.

Medication Protocols for Detox Will Depend on the Category of the Patient

The SAMSA book classifies detox patients into three groups to determine the appropriate level of care and medication the person will need to properly manage the detox process.

Getting Legal Help

If you suspect that you or a loved one received an improper detoxification treatment, you should talk with a medical malpractice lawyer to protect your legal rights. The lawyers at Newsome Melton can help you go after compensation for the harm you or a close relative suffered from improper detox.

Call us today at 855-633-2757 to get a free consultation. There is no obligation.

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