Author(s): Reynaud M, Malet L, Facy F, Glanddier P
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Abstract BACKGROUND: The Auvergne region of central France has the third highest mortality rate in the country for alcohol-related disorders and the highest level of alcohol consumption among young people. METHODS: An exhaustive cross-sectional study of regional hospital morbidity related to alcohol was undertaken on a single day in May 1998, including 9,552 hospital beds. All inpatients age 16 and older in the Departments of Medicine, Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Psychiatry, and Medium-Stay Services were studied. The aim was to define alcohol-related behavior patterns (by using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV] criteria of abuse and dependence and the CAGE questionnaire) and to measure the proportion of nonsomatic alcohol-related care dispensed in hospital. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of alcohol use disorders in all wards was 20\%. Half of these patients were alcohol dependent, a quarter were diagnosed as alcohol abusers, and a quarter had an alcohol-related problem that was not identified during the stay. Alcohol use disorders were more common in male inpatients (34\% vs. 8\% in female inpatients) and in certain age groups. One male subject in two and one female subject in five between 34 and 45 years had an alcohol-related problem. Almost 25\% of male inpatients studied between the ages of 16 and 20 years had an alcohol-related problem, but only half had been diagnosed previously. Hospital care for alcohol-related health problems was seriously inadequate. On average, 38\% of patients diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder received relevant nonsomatic alcohol care, of which 13\% were alcohol abusers and 50\% were alcohol-dependent patients. SIGNIFICANCE: This exhaustive study demonstrates the degree of alcohol-related morbidity among hospitalized patients, which is particularly high in men, in the Auvergne region of France. The study emphasizes the lack of diagnosis, particularly for the young, and the apparent deficiencies in the hospital management of these patients.
This article was published in Alcohol Clin Exp Res
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy