Alcohol: Daytime alcohol consumption immediately prior to a scheduled
medical examination has several possible implications. This behavior is
often associated with a high degree of stress perceived by the patient.
Stress is a distracting influence which lowers pain tolerance and may
interfere with the patient's ability to cooperate fully with medical
recommendations. Daytime alcohol use may also indicate ongoing problems
with alcoholism. Such problems may impair pain tolerance or ability to
cooperate with therapy. They increase diagnostic uncertainty, especially
when the primary complaints are subjective. Lack of full cooperation may
greatly affect the final result, particularly when treatment involves
either regular exercise or a strict immobilization protocol. For these and
other reasons, this presentation makes outcome less predictable and
increases the risk of surgical complications as well as delayed, incomplete
or only temporary recovery following treatment.
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