23 January 2015 In Drinking & Eating Patterns

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to examine the relations between drinking (mean quantity and heavy drinking patterns) and alcohol use disorders (AUDs) in the U.S. general population.

METHOD: Data from three telephone National Alcohol Surveys (in 2000, 2005, and 2010) were pooled, with separate analyses for men and women restricted to current drinkers (ns = 5,922 men, 6,270 women). Predictors were 12-month volume (mean drinks per day), rates of heavy drinking (5+/4+ drinks in a day for men/women), and very heavy drinking (8+, 12+, and 24+ drinks in a day). Outcomes were negative alcohol-related consequences constituting abuse (1+ of 4 DSM-IV-based domains assessed by 13 items) and alcohol dependence (symptoms in 3+ of 7 DSM-IV-based domains), together taken to indicate an AUD. Segmentation analyses were used to model risks of problem outcomes from drinking patterns separately by gender.

RESULTS: In the general population, men and women who consumed </=1 drink/day on average with no heavy drinking days did not incur substantial risks of an AUD (<10%). Men who drank from 1 to 2 drinks/day on average but never 5+ incurred a 16% risk of reporting an AUD (3.5% alcohol dependence). At higher volumes, men and women who indicated higher rates of drinking larger amounts per day and/or involving 8+ and 12+ drinks/day (and even 24+ drinks/day for men) showed much higher risks of experiencing AUDs.

CONCLUSIONS: The findings provide quantitative guidance for primary care practitioners who wish to make population-based recommendations to patients who might benefit by reducing both overall intake and amounts per occasion in an effort to lower their risks of developing AUDs.

04 December 2014 In Dementia

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether alcohol consumption is causally associated with cognitive impairment in older men as predicted by mendelian randomization.

METHODS: Retrospective analysis of a cohort study of 3,542 community-dwelling men aged 65 to 83 years followed for 6 years. Cognitive impairment was established by a Mini-Mental State Examination score of 23 or less. Participants provided detailed information about their use of alcohol during the preceding year and were classified as abstainers, occasional drinkers, and regular drinkers: mild (/=35 drinks/wk). We genotyped the rs1229984 G-->A variant of the alcohol dehydrogenase 1B (ADH1B) gene, which is associated with lowerprevalence of alcohol abuse and dependence. Other measures included age, education, marital status, smoking and physical activity, body mass index, diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular diseases.

RESULTS: At study entry, rs1229984 G-->A polymorphism was associated with lower prevalence of regular use of alcohol and decreased consumption among regular users. Six years later, 502 men (14.2%) showed evidence of cognitive impairment. Abstainers and irregular drinkers had higher odds of cognitive impairment than regular drinkers (odds ratio [OR] = 1.23, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.00-1.51, after adjustment for other measured factors). The rs1229984 G-->A polymorphism did not decrease the odds of cognitive impairment (AA/GG OR = 1.35, 95% CI = 0.29-6.27; GA/GG OR = 1.05, 95% CI = 0.71-1.55).

CONCLUSIONS: Alcohol consumption, including heavy regular drinking and abuse, is not a direct cause of cognitive impairment in later life. Our results are consistent with the possibility, but do not prove, that regular moderate drinking decreases the risk of cognitive impairment in older men.

04 December 2014 In Drinking & Eating Patterns

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to examine the relations between drinking (mean quantity and heavy drinking patterns) and alcohol use disorders (AUDs) in the U.S. general population.

METHOD: Data from three telephone National Alcohol Surveys (in 2000, 2005, and 2010) were pooled, with separate analyses for men and women restricted to current drinkers (ns = 5,922 men, 6,270 women). Predictors were 12-month volume (mean drinks per day), rates of heavy drinking (5+/4+ drinks in a day for men/women), and very heavy drinking (8+, 12+, and 24+ drinks in a day). Outcomes were negative alcohol-related consequences constituting abuse (1+ of 4 DSM-IV-based domains assessed by 13 items) and alcohol dependence (symptoms in 3+ of 7 DSM-IV-based domains), together taken to indicate an AUD. Segmentation analyses were used to model risks of problem outcomes from drinking patterns separately by gender.

RESULTS: In the general population, men and women who consumed </=1 drink/day on average with no heavy drinking days did not incur substantial risks of an AUD (<10%). Men who drank from 1 to 2 drinks/day on average but never 5+ incurred a 16% risk of reporting an AUD (3.5% alcohol dependence). At higher volumes, men and women who indicated higher rates of drinking larger amounts per day and/or involving 8+ and 12+ drinks/day (and even 24+ drinks/day for men) showed much higher risks of experiencing AUDs.

CONCLUSIONS: The findings provide quantitative guidance for primary care practitioners who wish to make population-based recommendations to patients who might benefit by reducing both overall intake and amounts per occasion in an effort to lower their risks of developing AUDs.

30 October 2014 In Cardiovascular System

Stroke is an international health problem with high associated human and economic costs. The mortality rate from stroke in Russia is one of the highest in the world. Risk factors identification is therefore a high priority from the public health perspective. Epidemiological evidence suggests that binge drinking is an important determinant of high stroke mortality rate in Russia. The aim of the present study was to estimate the premature stroke mortality attributable to alcohol abuse in Russia on the basis of aggregate-level data of stroke mortality and alcohol consumption. Age-standardized sex-specific male and female stroke mortality data for the period 1980-2005 and data on overall alcohol consumption were analyzed by means ARIMA time series analysis. The results of the analysis suggest that 26.8% of all male stroke deaths and 18.4% female stroke deaths in Russia could be attributed to alcohol. The estimated alcohol-attributable fraction for men ranged from 16.2% (75+ age group) to 57,5% (30-44 agegroup) and for women from 21.7% (60-74 age group) and 43.5% (30- 44 age group). The outcomes of this study provide support for the hypothesis that alcohol is an important contributor to the high stroke mortality rate in Russian Federation. Therefore prevention of alcohol attributable harm should be a major public health priority in Russia. Given the distribution of alcohol-related stroke deaths, interventions should be focused on the young and middle-aged men and women.

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