16 Hours Of Gaming + Too Much Energy Drinks = Kidney Failure, Coma

16 Hours Of Gaming + Too Much Energy Drinks = Kidney Failure, Coma

“I was playing Call of Duty”, Norwegian teenager Henrik Eide Dahl told The Local. “Then everything went dark and I passed out.”

Dahl, 14, had been playing the shooter on his school’s LAN with friends when, taking a break in the cafeteria, he collapsed. Rushed to hospital, his kidneys failed and he slipped into a coma.

Turns out he’d consumed 4 litres of energy drinks to sustain the session, which far exceeds any kind of manufacturer’s warning or shred of common sense.

He ended up spending 13 days in hospital, and still has to take drugs to control his high blood pressure.

“It was severely life-threatening”, says Anne Kathrine Duns, one of the doctors who treated him. “The central nervous system, cardiovascular system, lungs and kidneys were affected.”

While they can’t be certain on the causes of such an adverse reaction, since he doesn’t have any existing medical conditions, “for now we are attributing this to the consumption of large amounts of energy drink”.

So, those of you without a sense of care for your fragile human body, let this be a reminder: if you’re going to game for 16 hours, may be try and stay awake the old-fashioned way. Or, you know, get some sleep, you crazy kid.

Caffeine-fuelled game binge puts boy in coma [The Local, via Game Politics]


  • Do not think the 16 hours of gaming really had anything to do with it. Do anything after drinking 4 litres of energy drink and chances are you will have problems.

    • 16 hours is honestly nothing. Anyone who has ever gone through a wow launch and tried the rush to max level can attest to that (myself included). The whole consumption of energy drinks during these sessions being the norm is what’s terrible. I never drank them. Stayed awake and fueled using more natural means (like proper food and water)

      • In my younger years, as an 18 year old, it wasn’t unheard of for us to have 24 – 30 hour marathons of games like ZELDA or Final Fantasy to be honest on the SNES or whatever the newest RPG was. We’d get a couple of games, flick back and forth between them over that whole day and a bit. The biggest difference though was we always stayed hydrated. We drank plenty of cordial (which is ok (not perfect but ok) to keep hydrated as it’s 95% water), Softdrink and the such. But we never had energy drinks. The worst around at that time was probably ‘Lucozade’ and ‘Monster’ which tasted like shit anyhow. As you guys said, 4L of energy drinks is enough to fuck anyone up.

        At my martial arts tournament yesterday, after winning his round of continuous fighting, my mate collapsed after walking off the mat. It was scary to be honest, turns out he’s been existing on caffeine pills and energy drinks, barely touching water. Medics got him to hospital and there, they said he was severely dehydrated. So yes, gaming isn’t a factor here, nor was martial arts there. It’s the abuse of those drinks, which in the RIGHT hands aren’t too bad in small doses, but in the wrong uninformed hands, can be outright dangerous.

        • Same thing happened to a friend of mine when we were rehearsing a play for 18 hours at a time, 5-6 days a week. He drank mother to get him through and he faceplanted the ground right after one of the more arduous sessions. When celebs talk about being in rehab for “exhaustion”, in no way do I find it hard to believe.

          • Absolutely. It was some scary shit to watch my mate collapse yesterday. I had no idea purely a lack of water and that stuff could do it to you. I watched their heart monitor as his heart was racing, they said he almost needed defibrilation at one point. They had cold packs of ice under his armpit, we were pouring water over the back of his head at one point. Possibly the scariest thing I’ve seen in a long time. Now, I’m a martial artist, I’m trained to deal *in theory* with certain situations, but when you’re in a situation where something like that is out of your control, you feel weak. But when that situation can be avoided by something as simple as regularly drinking H20… you better believe I’m glad I drink between 4 – 5 liters a day.

          • The human body can last up to 3 weeks w/o food. But on average only 3 days w/o water.

            Getting proper hydration is always important!

      • Ahh WoW xpac launches, how my body loathes thy existence. Gets punished for ballpark 35 hour straight run with breaks for toilet and so on. Suggestions to prepare a big ass batch of easy to serve food, potato salad, pasta, stirfry etc that you can spoon into a bowl and heat up in the time it takes you to go to the toilet and refill your drink and perhaps have a smoke if that’s your thing.
        But yeh, definitely lay off the energy drinks, 1 or 2 cans is fine, any more than that and you will regret it, especially if you aren’t eating something solid

    • Reckon he’d have passed out much sooner if he’d been hiking instead of gaming. ๐Ÿ˜›

    • I drank 2L of mother at the titanfall Lan I went to the weekend before. Except for the nose bleed I felt fine ๐Ÿ˜€


    won’t somebody think of the children?

    that is what australia would do.
    4 LITERS of that shit is bad! yes, i drink red bull (1 small can, it actually helps with my chronic back pain, no idea why) most i have had would be 2 in a day, but, this kid… around 16 cans… is just stupidity

    average human consumption of water is 2 or so liters, this can be taken drinking, and also a component i food (say a soup), but this kid had 4 liters… no wonder he nearly went to a mode of permadeath.
    utter stupidity.

    • Haha I could manage 2litres in a day easy, but I like to savour them, plus they are expensive. All I tend to do after that is constant maths and heavy metal.

      • Hah, I can totally do that thing without any problems to prove how cool I am but I don’t for reasons totally unrelated to the fact that I can’t and/or wouldn’t want to risk damage to myself. I could handle 2L of energy drink in a day too. I’m not going to though because it’s gonna have negative side effects and is completely unnecessary.

        • Actually it depends on your genes, metabolism, your diet, and your physical activity. I know plenty of people like myself who would experience minimal short term effects, and live active lifestyles; and then there are people who get jittery and such and can experience heart problems.

  • home made iced coffee and a good game was all i needed to stay up but then energy drinks back then were not as commons as today.

  • I wonder if he had a pre-existing medical condition that simply came to light after this binge of of energy drinks and video gaming.

  • Holy crap, only 16hrs and only 4 litres? Is that all? Jesus. The gaming/caffeine benders I’ve been on put that shit to shame… I never realized how close to death I came!

      • Never had those problems. c.c
        Possibly superliver/kidneys? That or I’ve permanently damaged them in my rabid gaming youth and will need to grow a plump, tender, juicy clone full of orrrrgaaaans to plunder in my old age.

        • I’m hoping to have cloning advanced enough so we can just grow the organs.

          Also who is up for a Time Lord package? We rewire you with 2 hearts. But you need to supply your own Companion and TARDIS.

          • The Companion I can probably rustle up, but the TARDIS… uh.
            Chuck me a deus ex machina sonic screwdriver and I’ll whip something up.

    • I know what you mean. I’m amazed I never killed myself with the stuff when I was younger.

      Back in ye olden days when energy drinks first hit the market, none of us had any idea how badly you could be affected by drinking high quantities of the stuff. They didn’t carry warnings back then (just “contains caffeine”), and no one had ever heard of people dying from it.

      We often had LAN sessions and such where we would binge on it like it was coke, often with alcohol in the mix as well. I remember at uni once they were giving out as many free Viking bars as you wanted, and people were mowing through boxes full of them.

      Seriously, would not attempt that kind of shit with what we know these days.

  • now I know why all the little kids on CoD squeal and talk about penis so much – too many energy drinks.

  • No stamina in these kids. I’d barely need more than a cup of tea and a bag f Doritos for such a small session.

    You drink energy drink before physical exertion. Not video games.

    • I think you may be thinking Gatorade or something, most IT guys use it to concentrate on the job.

      • I’ve only ever met two IT professionals IRL (I don’t get out much). They mostly live on coffee.

        As an IT hobbyist (A decade of self-taught webdev and currently taking a degree in game design and building (includes 3DS Max, Photoshop and UDK mostly)) I find myself living mostly on Coke (cola!) and cigarettes.

        • My opnion is based on iinet and another it company I play poker with (I’m friends with the guy that hosts it)

          both have energy drink fridges, hence my opinion…gees were lucky to get expired milk at my work ๐Ÿ˜

        • Well it does wake me up…i guess I relate that to being able to concentrate better….not really sure if actually doing a better job.

          • I notice an increased mental and physical performance after drinking red bull at work.

            I usually stick to one energy drink per work day. Moving off full time, that’s made a difference in my health.

    • You shouldn’t drink energy drinks before physical exertion. It can dehydrate and cause serious heart problems which would only be exacerbated by physical activity.

      • You’d drink it about a half hour before hand. If you are doing physical activity, you’d be smart to have a source of water near-by or on-tap. I’m fairly sure most people doing that kind of thing do.

  • This is so stupid, the Doctors 100% know what the problem is and it has nothing do with gaming and everything to do with caffeine overdose. Almost everything else in the average drink is harmless even at that quantity.

    I mean the kid is an idiot, most energy drinks contain around 200+MG of Caffeine in 500ml (each drink is roughly the same but all are over that threshold). People with underlying conditions can die from a shot of 200.

    Considering the half life is about 6 hours I’m surprised he isn’t dead and probably had over 1000MG at one point or another in his system. He has now utterly destroyed his kidney, liver, heart and lungs and will probably need transplants for at least one of them.

    Jesus i mean there is a reason children aren’t supposed to drink coffee, and its this. This article is almost as bad as his decision. This was hardly a serve reaction, the kid SHOULD have died and anyone with a modicum of knowledge about what the stuff does to you would know that (or you know if they didn’t just copy paste the article and researched the effects just a bit).

  • Pfft, amateur. Don’t make ’em like they used to!

    In all seriousness, what an idiot. I only have an energy drink once every, what, few months tops? Even then, it’s usually because I’m about to do some sort of exercise. Ah well, case in point, COD is basically next step in natural selection; weeding out the undesirables since ’09. Ok, a bit much maybe.

  • I’m usually completely against bans and everything of the sort but there seems to be a need to restrict what age group can buy these drinks. Stupid kids keep ruining their bodies with them and they aren’t yet mature enough to read the labels.

    I just think it’s something worth discussing which is weird for me since banning things is usually going too far but for this? Seems fair.

  • Personally I sustained 24/30hr sessions with a pizza and a 1.25l of coke. 16hrs was a Cherry Ripe, Approx 1L of coke and a Killer Python, and that includes skipping dinner. Water when the soft drinks ran out.

    When I was driving long distances at night we’d be snacking on Shapes, when you started feeling drowsy (5-6hrs) and the eating wasn’t working you pulled over and woke the other guy.

    Night Driving can be tiring and boring far more than day driving.

  • Lack of mature judgement at age 14 is not really that unusual. Calling the kid an idiot because he listened to the advertising is probably a bit unfair to him. Lack of knowledge does not equate to lack of intelligence; the advertising/image of these products is that they are “fuel” for “extreme” activities, where “extreme” activities seems to cover pretty much anything beyond being asleep.

    For the record, I don’t touch these things myself. My sole foray into hypercaffeinated drinks was when I once drank a can of double-caffeine Pepsi Max.

  • It was the energy drinks that did it, not the long hours of gameplay. I don’t think those particular drinks should be drunken in large quantities at all.

  • 16 odd hours of Counter Strike and Action Half-Life on choc chip muesli bars, cup ramen and water.

    Welcome to the big leagues son.

  • At that age we used to do drink huge amounts of Coke or other soft drinks for those 3 day LANs.

    A local ISP held a semi private lan in house every month or two and let us use the t3 line in a time where it was much harder to actually source digital files (IRC, ftp, eventually napster) so we couldnt impact the network too much. Playing counter strike, starcraft, bf1942, HOMM3 and trading warez and porn etc. all fueled by good old sugar, junk food and adrenaline. Most of the guys came and left or slept on the floor though so there was respite if required.

    Then one day someone with a big grin emptys a plastic bag full of VIG High Potency boxes with the instructions: “take as required.” I think they are slightly better than energy drinks due to the 1g of guarana seed extract being equivelent to maybe 30-40mg of caffiene as well as the stimulant effects of ginseng. Mostly though because its a damn tablet we treated it with a lot more respect then a an energy drink binge.

    The ld50 of Caffeine is really high, 150-200mg/kg according to wikipedia so one issue seems to be identifying if you or your children have a lower tolerance and I think a very important fact that I havent seen mentioned in any of these gaming/energy drink/ death news stories is that caffiene interacts with lots of medications. Some anti depressants and other stimulants can substancially lower what your body can withstand.

    Education not prohibition or restriction!

  • A few years ago, 7-Eleven had a dollar day. After talking with the manager my friends and I bought 24 cases of monster (500ml per can) for a dollar a can. We split the cases 3 ways. I started drinking a can a day.

    Pretty soon this became 2, 3, 4, 5 and eventually 6 cans a day. Worked out at 3 litres of monster per day. Needless to say I was addicted by this point, but as with all addictions never realised that I was, that I could stop whenever I wanted. But I felt like I could do anything and that I had endless amounts of energy.

    I stopped eating properly, started sleeping 2-3 hours a day, felt like rubbish and could feel my heart pounding. At one point I started to drink a can before sleep as it would make me sleepy. I started having black coffees with 3-4 spoons of instant mix when I didn’t have any monster around.

    It all came to a head when I was out with my friend at about 3 am one night rainy night. I started to see faces everywhere I looked. They were usually in the form of 2 lights side by side with a long fluro underneath which my mind interpreted as 2 eyes and a mouth. I had insane paranoia and felt that something was trying to get me. I completely broke down and got driven home.

    I went to the doctors the next day, turns out I had a chemically induced psychotic episode due to the build-up of energy drink in my system. Needless to say went cold turkey off all caffeine products and didn’t have any energy drinks for 2 years. since then I have one every couple of months when I feel tired from work but I have noticed that they dont have the same “pick me up” effect that one can of red bull used to have.

    Long story short? Steer clear of the stuff.

  • Let kids drink as much of this shit as they want, Darwin’ll get them.

    Problem solved.

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