Value of Visual Screening by Medical Doctors in Diagnosing Alcohol Abuse: A Prospective StudyP Chevalley1, J Gauthey1*, D Pignat2, M Faouzi3, V Darioli1 and D Genné1
- *Corresponding Author:
- Jérôme Gauthey
Resident in internal medicine
La Chaux-de-Fonds, Spitalzentrum
Vogelsang 84, 2501 Biel/Bienne, Switzerland
Tel: +41-223-001-2 10
E-mail: [email protected] szb-chb.ch
Received date: August 11, 2015; Accepted date: August 26, 2015; Published date: August 31, 2015
Citation: Chevalley P, Gauthey J, Pignat D, Faouzi M, Darioli V, et al. (2015) Value of Visual Screening by Medical Doctors in Diagnosing Alcohol Abuse: A Prospective Study. J Alcohol Drug Depend 3:219. doi: 10.4172/23296488.1000219
Copyright: © 2015 Chevalley P, 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.
Goal of the study: To determine the ability of physicians to identify persons suffering from alcohol abuse by a visual first-look evaluation and to assess the impact of the examiner’s clinical experience on the accurateness of the evaluation. Method: 28 Doctors working in two hospitals determine with a rapid visual contact if 157 in-patients suffer from alcohol abuse. Every patient was independently evaluated for alcohol abuse based upon the CAGE questionnaire and DSM-IV criteria, considered together as “gold standard”. Results: 1118 evaluations were performed. Alcohol abuse was diagnosed in 19.7%, using gold-standard. The specificity of a visual first-look evaluation was 90.55%, the positive predictive value 62.5% and the positive likelihood ratio 3.89. The sensitivity was 40%. There was no statistically significant difference in performance according to clinical experience. Conclusions: Sensitivity of rapid visual inspection for diagnostic of alcohol abuse is weak and thus not appropriate for screening. Specificity, however, approaches that of CAGE. Clinical experience of the examiner had no impact on performance.