Alcohol withdrawal seizures are also known as or subsume Rum fits.
Alcohol withdrawal seizures are frequently encountered in the emergency room. Such seizures comprise acute and serious complications to alcohol abuse that need immediate attention. Benzodiazepines should be the first choice in the pharmacological management of such seizures. There is a risk of mistakenly making an epilepsy diagnosis if a thorough alcohol anamnesis is omitted. Any patient with withdrawal seizures should be given thiamine during hospitalization, regardless of nutritional state. In this clinical summary, Geir Brathen MD PhD of Trondheim University Hospital in Norway and Maurizio Leone MD of Ospedale Maggiore della Carità in Novara, Italy, explain the clinical presentation, pathophysiology, diagnostic work-up, and management of alcohol withdrawal seizures and provide clues to the differentiation of withdrawal seizures from seizures due to epilepsy.