• Sweden edition
 
Girl drinks herself to death in 'water poker'

Girl drinks herself to death in 'water poker'

Published: 06 Jul 2012 15:04 GMT+02:00
Updated: 06 Jul 2012 15:04 GMT+02:00

The girl had drunk six litres of water in the game, and was pronounced dead in her home town after being declared brain dead in Sweden following the incident.

The school children played the game on the Åland islands located between Sweden and Finland, with the rules being that the loser of each hand on poker had to down a whole glass of water.

The girl’s water intoxication was not noticed by teachers until they were making a head count of the students later in the evening.

“She sat on the toilet and vomited. She had drunk an enormous amount of water,” said Jukka Silvola, principal of the school, to the Aftonbladet newspaper, adding that the girl was “truly well-liked”.

The 12-year-old was immediately taken to a hospital in Åland capital of Mariehamn before being transferred to specialist ward of the Uppsala University Hospital the next morning.

There, the girl was declared brain dead and was taken to her hometown of Nystad in eastern Finland in May, where she died a few days later.

Johan Valtysson, head of the intensive care ward at the Uppsala hospital, explained how water intoxication can lead to fatal disturbances in brain functions.

“What happens when you drink too much water is that your blood is diluted and salt levels in the blood are increased,” he told the paper.

“The effect is that the water is drawn into the brain which then swells up due to the brain’s fluid accumulation. The blood flow is then cut off and you become brain dead.”

An adult should drink around two to three litres of water a day, and the 12-year-old is believed to have consumed six.

Meanwhile, Valtysson told the paper that he can’t fathom why anyone would play “water poker”.

“This is a truly dangerous game,” he said.

TT/The Local/og

twitter.com/thelocalsweden

Your comments about this article

17:33 July 6, 2012 by tadchem
"What happens when you drink too much water is that your blood is diluted and salt levels in the blood are increased," he told the paper.

Wrong. Salt levels are *decreased*. It is called 'hyponatremia.' Even water can be poisonous.

"All things are poison, and nothing is without poison; only the dose permits something not to be poisonous." - Paracelsus, ca 1520.
17:41 July 6, 2012 by Paul_225
If she got a royal flush this wouldn't have happened. (Sorry).
18:23 July 6, 2012 by cattie
My son has a salt-losing congenital condition that causes hyponatremia. If the electolyte imbalance becomes too much, it leads to seizures, brain damage and then heart failure.
19:26 July 6, 2012 by dizzymoe33
Another sad tragedy. But my question is where were the adults? Was there no adult supervision?
21:19 July 6, 2012 by johan rebel
There is apparently no limit to the many new ways of natural selection that modern society can come up with.
22:12 July 6, 2012 by johnny1939
I always knew that water was bad for you.
00:21 July 7, 2012 by Rat bat
Oh dear, what a stupid game. I have heard of fatal water intakes in the past. Normally they have involved derranged or intoxicated people.

I guess that the osmotic effects started to make her cells burst
00:41 July 7, 2012 by suso
This is a tragic death which could have been avoided easily in the first place.Children have relatively small body mass and could easily get Water Intoxication.Almost all known cases of this syndrome in non-exercising otherwise normal individuals are recorded in circumstances of forced water drinking,and all too often in contests.

There should have been enough awareness of this condition all around.

but why that delay in recognizing the problem?surely she had symptoms and signs before her condition became irreversible.

she died at home.However,being a child who was previously healthy I would stayed her in the ICU for a longer period than for an adult,until all attempts,however meager,failed.

A bad reflection from many sides.
08:18 July 7, 2012 by playmobil
Very sad for the family.. Wondering now if someone gonna call for a ban on water after this tragic death..

Happy that everyone agrees strait away about the abuse of water being the cause of the death and not the water for once..

Usually, everyone forget about this concept of abuse and call for a ban of the substance in itself.. Yes aim talking about drugs.
14:08 July 8, 2012 by Tiny Red Ant
It is sad that someone died at such a tender age. It has always been said that taking too much of something could be bad for your health.
11:45 July 9, 2012 by nolikegohome
water intoxication: headache, personality changes, changes in behavior, confusion, irritability, and drowsiness. These are sometimes followed by difficulty breathing during exertion, muscle weakness, twitching, or cramping, nausea, vomiting, thirst, and a dulled ability to perceive and interpret sensory information. As the condition persists papillary and vital signs may result including bradycardia and widened pulse pressure. The cells in the brain may swell to the point where blood flow is interrupted resulting in cerebral edema.

Had the teachers had noticed the early signs as mentioned above they should have stopped the girl from drinking water and or contacted the hospital. But then not many ppl know about this.
Today's headlines
Swedish teenagers abused on Secret app
File photo: Fredrik Sandberg/Scanpix

Swedish teenagers abused on Secret app

Swedish police are struggling to know what to do with a new batch of criminal reports filed by teenagers upset about a controversial app that allows users to post comments and pictures anonymously. READ  

National
Swedish man beats bus in video challenge

Swedish man beats bus in video challenge

UPDATED: A Swedish runner who filmed himself beating his bus in Sundbyberg in north west Stockholm over the weekend is now planning to a similar challenge on the capital's Metro system. READ  

Regional
Rain causes power cuts across east Sweden
Strong winds are battering Stockholm and the east coast of Sweden. Photo: TT

Rain causes power cuts across east Sweden

Heavy rain and wind have left thousands without electricity in eastern Sweden, with ferries also disrupted by the storm. READ  

National
Sweden's benefit agency website down
Sweden's Social Insurance Agency is experiencing problems. Photo: TT

Sweden's benefit agency website down

Sweden's Social Insurance Agency website was out of action on Monday, as officials promised that the technical fault would not delay benefit payments. READ  

Elections 2014
Budget headache for new coalition partners
Social Democrat economic spokesperson Magdalena Andersson with Per Bo from the Green Party. Photo: TT

Budget headache for new coalition partners

UPDATED: The Social Democrats have been holding talks with the Green party to try and agree on a future coalition budget. But questions remain over how they will work together on issues including defence and nuclear power. READ  

National
US runaway banned from name change in Sweden
'Wanted' photograph of David Hemler used by US Air Force Office of Special Investigations. Hemler lives and works in Uppsala. Photo: Shutterstock

US runaway banned from name change in Sweden

A US airman who deserted from the military three decades ago and moved to Sweden has failed in his bid to get his old name back, because a Swedish court says he can’t prove his identity. READ  

My Swedish Career
Plucked out of Canada for love and guitars
Sharleen in action. Photo: Sebastian Bularca

Plucked out of Canada for love and guitars

For this week's My Swedish Career we meet a Canadian who came to Sweden for love and now works in Lidköping, custom-making guitars. READ  

Regional
Flood and high wind warning in east Sweden
Stockholm experienced heavy rain on Sunday. Photo: TT

Flood and high wind warning in east Sweden

After heavy rain broke off the September sunshine in eastern Sweden on Sunday, forecasters warn more bad weather is on the way. READ  

Tech
World car record on Malmö bridge

World car record on Malmö bridge

The longest electric car parade on a bridge between two countries was formed on the Öresund Bridge between Sweden and Denmark on Sunday, with environmental campaigners breaking several other world records in the process. READ  

National
Two hurt in Helsingborg ferry crash
The damaged ferry is being inspected on Monday. Photo: TT

Two hurt in Helsingborg ferry crash

UPDATED: A ferry crashed into a pier in the port of Helsingborg in southern Sweden on Sunday night, with two people taken to hospital following the collision. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Finest
Gallery
People-watching: September 20th
The 'black gold' of Sweden's west coast.
National
West Sweden prepares for the 2014 lobster premiere
Society
What's on in Sweden
Politics
How Sweden Democrats went mainstream
Politics
Scandinavia and Scotland: closer links?
Blog updates

22 September

Welcome National Geographic! (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"What comes to mind when you think of the “The Arctic”? Crystal-encased cliffs jutting from the sea, baronial Polar bears scavenging over sheets of cracked ice or a lone explorer heading north into the night. The image my mind invokes is of three sparkling green lines splashed across the sky like graffiti— the Aurora Borealis— our..." READ »

 

19 September

Editor’s blog (The Local Sweden) »

"Happy Friday readers! It sure has been a exciting week in Sweden, where we’re set to get a new Prime Minister after Fredrik Reinfeldt stepped down following Sunday’s elections. The Local blogged live from the key political gatherings across Stockholm. Why not re-visit the action by taking a look at our photos, tweets, videos and analysis? Since the..." READ »

 
 
 
Gallery
Property of the week - Eskilstuna
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Society
How I became a surf blogger when I moved to Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Society
Why is Stockholm's Södermalm so cool?
Gallery
People-watching: September 11th
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Politics
Five possible election outcomes
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Gallery
Property of the week - Hornstull, Stockholm
Analysis
Five differences between the UK and Sweden
Welshman Jonny Luck is now a chef in Sweden
Society
How I opened my own restaurant in Sweden's Malmö
Sponsored Article
Stockholm tech fest: relive the magic
Gallery
People-watching September 8th
Photo: TT
Politics
Feminists fight for first seats
Politics
Immigration cut push from Sweden Democrats
Sheryl Sandberg says women have "low expectations"
Tech
Facebook exec talks women's limits in Swedish business
Politics
Left Party calls for justice and equality
Politics
Green Party wants 'better world' for kids
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

849
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN