How does auto-brewery-syndrome work exactly? Their bodies somehow produce alcohol without even consuming it? Does this have to do with how the body breaks down food... does it ferment and produce ethanol?

Does their body produce enough alcohol to the point where they are intoxicated and they blood-alcohol levels cause hangovers?

When was it discovered that this was a legitimate syndrome?

Has anyone ever been accused of being an alcoholic because of this? Or been ticketed with an DUI?

How does one control this symptom if they have it?


My husband was diagnosed with Autobrewery Syndrome in Sept 2015 by the leading ABS clinical doctor Dr. Anup Kanodia as a direct result of a motor vehicle accident while at work in December 2014. He was taken to the hospital immediately after the accident where his blood draw was 0.29 BAC EVEN THOUGH HE WAS NOT OBSERVED TO BE INTOXICATED BY THE LAW OFFICER OR THE ER MEDICAL STAFF. I observed him prior to this accident showing signs of intestinal distress, an altered mental state, memory problems, severe bloating, and general flu-like symptoms. Just like several other confirmed ABS patients, he took a course of antibiotics in 2013 as prescribed by his Primary Healthcare Physician.

Autobrewery Syndrome is believed to be caused by common opportunistic yeast and bacteria found in the intestines of most humans. Carbohydrates (sugars and starches) are consumed normally and after they leave the stomach, the yeast and bacteria in the small intestine begin using that energy to ferment and create ethanol. At some point, the population of yeast and bacteria go into ethanol overdrive and make the person intoxicated - without that person having had a single sip of alcohol.

The earliest scientific literature I could find on the syndrome is from Japan in the 1930s. It has popped up occasionally since then as a medical oddity article. In 2013, Dr. Barbara Cordell published a new paper describing the timeline and symptoms of a person eventually diagnosed with Autobrewery Syndrome.

My husband is now a regular patient of Dr. Kanodia's and we consult regularly with Dr. Cordell to discuss dietary issues specific to ABS sufferers.

As a direct result of Autobrewery Syndrome, my husband was convicted of a DUII, reckless driving, and criminal negligence by the State of Oregon in January 2016. The mandatory restitution we now owe to the State of Oregon exceeds $ 382,000 dollars (USD).

We are appealing this original conviction based upon the fact that the State of Oregon violated his Civil Rights during the trial. He was not allowed to use his medical diagnosis in his own legal defense - per the judge's orders issued the night before his trial.

We have created a website regarding our story and the impact ABS has had on our lives. We also have a Facebook page if you'd like to communicate further with either of us.

Sierra & Ray Lewis https://www.facebook.com/Autobreweryawareness/ http://www.autobreweryawareness.com/

  • Wow, Sierra, thanks for an incredible answer and for your insights. I'm terribly sorry to hear of the legal system in Oregon and how they dismissed (chose not to recognize a legitimate medical disability/condition, which is crucial to the case). Best of luck to both of you! (Thanks for sharing the websites!) Jan 20 '17 at 6:53

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