alexa Risky Drinking Women: Contrasting Therapeutic Approaches
ISSN: 2329-6488

Journal of Alcoholism & Drug Dependence
Open Access

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Research Article

Risky Drinking Women: Contrasting Therapeutic Approaches

Christina Scheffel Birath1,2*, Britt af Klinteberg3,4,5, Valerie DeMarinis2,6,7, Sarah Hauke8, Jennifer A Smallwood8 and Grace Chang8,9,10

1 Stockholm Centre for Dependency Disorders, Stockholm, Sweden

2 Public Mental Health Promotion Research Area, Uppsala University, Sweden

3 Department of Women’s and Children’s Health, Karolinska Institute, Sweden

4 Centre for Health Equity Studies, Stockholm University/Karolinska Institute, Sweden

5 Department of Psychology, Stockholm University, Sweden

6 Division on Addictions, Department of Psychiatry, Cambridge Health Services, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts, USA (at the time of the study)

7 IMPACT research programme, Uppsala University, Sweden

8 Harvard Medical School, Department of Psychiatry, Boston, MA 02115, USA

9 Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Department of Psychiatry, 75 Francis Street, Boston, MA 02115, USA

10 VA Boston Healthcare System, Boston, MA, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Christina Scheffel Birath
Stockholm Centre for Dependency Disorders
Box 17914, SE 118, 95 Stockholm, Sweden
Tel: +467-07-36-27-69
Fax: +468-321-796
E-mail: [email protected]

Received date: February 24, 2014; Accepted date: April 15, 2014; Published date: April 21, 2014

Citation: Birath CS, af Klinteberg B, DeMarinis V, Hauke S, Smallwood JA, et al. (2014) Risky Drinking Women: Contrasting Therapeutic Approaches. J Alcohol Drug Depend 2:160. doi: 10.4172/2329-6488.1000160

Copyright: © 2014 Birath CS, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



Background: The importance of early identification and effective treatment for risky drinking grows with the increasing rate of alcohol use by women. Objectives: This study aims to contrast treatment approaches for two samples of problem drinking women. Methods: The samples consisted of (i) 134 alcohol treatment-seeking Swedish women receiving long-term comprehensive services; and (ii) 152 US women who were not seeking treatment for alcohol but were medical outpatients with one of four conditions exacerbated by excessive alcohol use and received a brief intervention as part of a study. Data consisted of questionnaires assessing alcohol consumption, perceived stress and attitudes towards change. Results: While the treatment-seeking Swedish group drank more alcohol at the start of treatment, all women reduced their consumption of alcohol at the end of treatment/follow-up. Women who reported more stress drank more initially in both samples. Conclusion and Scientific Significance: This report contrasts two “extreme” approaches to treatment: longterm, open-ended, outpatient treatment and, time-limited, structured brief intervention for risky drinking women. Both treatment methods yielded positive results with significantly reduced drinking. Factors associated with successful outcome included the women’s attitudes toward treatment and conviction for the necessity of change in drinking habits.


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