Las Vegas Criminal Defense Attorney
Understanding Alcohol Absoprtion and DUI We Fight For You When It Matters Most

Absorption & Elimination

How does absorption work?

In order for a DUI arrest to be substantiated, they must be able to prove that your driving abilities were impaired and that you were over the legal limit. For this reason, it is crucial that you work with an individual who understands how alcohol interacts with your body.

When you drink alcohol, it is absorbed through your mouth, esophagus, stomach, and small intestine. The rate of absorption will increase as it moves down the gastrointestinal tract. From the stomach, alcohol is absorbed much faster into the bloodstream, which is why drinking on an empty stomach can cause your BAC to rise faster than normal. On average, around 60% of the alcohol you drink will be absorbed close to 30 minutes after drinking, with 90-100% being absorbed in an hour and 30 minutes.

However, the following factors may affect this rate:

  • Concentration of alcohol of the drink you ingested
  • Amount and type of food in your stomach
  • The rate at which you drank it
  • Your body weight

Eliminating Alcohol from Your Body

So how is alcohol eliminated from your body? A majority of it will be oxidized in the liver, forming water and carbon dioxide. This gas is dissolved in your blood, eventually reaching your lungs, where it will then be exhaled. The rate of oxidation can vary depending on the effectiveness of your liver functions. If you drink alcohol on a regular basis, your body will likely burn it much faster than if you are just a casual drinker.

The small percentage of alcohol remaining in your system will be eliminated from your sweat, urine, and breath. This is why a breath or urine test can be commonly used to determine BAC. This also means that something as small as a burp could cause your BAC to spike unnaturally, leaving room for questioning BAC results.

The more you know and understand about absorption and elimination, the more you will be prepared to challenge the evidence against you.

Defense from a Las Vegas DUI Lawyer

One of the most complex aspects of a DUI case is the most important piece of evidence needed to convict an individual: their blood alcohol count. However, BAC is very debatable, as absorption and elimination can change quickly, rising or falling in just a matter of minutes. This may lead to an inaccurate spike in BAC after an individual was pulled over, meaning their BAC would have been lower while driving. When this is the case, a DUI arrest can often be challenged.

The bottom line is that proving that you were driving under the influence can be challenging for the prosecution, especially when you have a knowledgeable defense lawyer on your side. You need to contact our Las Vegas DUI attorneys as soon as possible so we can start reviewing any BAC evidence against you.

Get our seasoned legal advocates on your side today! Contact us to schedule your free consultation with our criminal defense firm.

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