The Poison Control Centre at the country's largest hospital, Bach Mai in Hanoi, has received many alcohol poisoning patients in the days leading up to Tet, said centre director Nguyen Kim Son.

One of the most serious cases was a man from Hanoi who lost his eyesight and suffered renal and respiratory failure after drinking homemade wine.

Doctors at the centre said that they had treated many critical cases like this. Methanol poisoning, induced by the industrial alcohol used to produce cheap wine, can cause blindness and even death.

Son said that the number of alcohol poisoning cases always rose before and after the Tet holiday. As Tet approaches, the number of patients with acute pancreatitis and alcohol comas was also on the rise. In the last two months, two people died after comas due to alcohol.

Medical experts advised people to control their alcohol intake and choose wine and alcohol beverages with clear indication of origin.

Consumption of other beverages will also increase as Tet nears, along with prices, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade. However, consumption of alcohol is lower than other beverages due to worries about quality.-VNA