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Outcome in Relation to Drinking Goals in Alcohol-Dependent Individuals: A Follow-up Study 2.5 and 5 Years After Treatment Entry.

Journal article
Authors Kristina Berglund
Kerstin K Rauwolf
Ulf Berggren
Jan Balldin
Claudia Fahlke
Published in Alcohol and Alcoholism
Volume 54
Issue 4
Pages 439–445
ISSN 1464-3502
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry
Department of Psychology
Pages 439–445
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1093/alcalc/agz042
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...
Keywords alcohol dependence, drinking goals, treatment outcome
Subject categories Psychology

Abstract

To evaluate the long-term treatment outcome (up to 5 years) with respect to different drinking goals of patients.Alcohol-dependent individuals (n = 349) were recruited from three alcohol treatment units. They were interviewed using the Addiction Severity Index (ASI). They were sub-grouped according to their goal at treatment entry: abstinence, low- risk drinking and no decided goal.Patients with abstinence as a goal at treatment entry reported at 2.5 years follow-up a higher abstinence rate, a more pronounced reduction in alcohol consumption, reduction in total number of DSM-IV criteria, higher frequency of low-risk drinking and fewer diagnoses of alcohol dependence compared to the groups who had low risk drinking as a goal or no decided goal. This improvement remained basically unchanged in all three groups at 5 years follow-up, suggesting long-term stability after the treatment interventions.The findings suggest that: (1) alcohol-dependent patients who have abstinence as their own drinking goal have a more favorable treatment outcome than those who have low-risk drinking as a goal or no decided goal. (2) Abstinence as a drinking goal should be considered for those who have a longer duration (for example more than 10 years) of their alcohol-related problems. (3) Patients who have no decided goal should be recommended abstinence as a drinking goal.

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