Printer Friendly

Alcoholics heed medical advice.

A study of employees at a large manufacturing plant finds a close association between receiving a warning from a physician about the health dangers of alcohol abuse and abstinence or reduced alcohol consumption more than two years later. Many factors contribute to recovery among alcoholics, but "a physician's warning may have a lasting beneficial effect," conclude psychologist Diana C. Walsh of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and her co-workers.

However, as in previous studies, Walsh's group reports that primary-care physicians rarely issue such warnings, even to patients with severe and obvious alcohol problems.

The researchers, who describe their findings in the Feb. 5 JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, studied 200 men identified through company-run assessments as suffering from alcoholism or bouts of alcohol abuse. Upon entering treatment - hospitalization, Alcoholics Anonymous or both - 148 men reported that they had seen a physician in the past year. Only 33 recalled getting a warning from a physician regarding alcohol's harmful health effects, although workplace evaluations easily picked up their alcohol problems.

Two years after entering treatment, men who had received physician warnings abstained more often and engaged in fewer monthly alcohol binges than their comrades. This finding held true even when the researches controlled for severity of alcohol abuse and other factors linked to treatment success.
COPYRIGHT 1992 Science Service, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Science News
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Feb 8, 1992
Words:217
Previous Article:Baby's first phonemes.
Next Article:Did impacts help dinosaurs thrive?
Topics:


Related Articles
Intoxicating habits: some alcoholism researchers say they are studying a learned behavior, not a disease.
Woman drinking alcohol: when less is more.
Brain data fuel alcoholism gene clash.
Getting wetter?
AA's motivational benefits.
"AN ARGUMENT THAT GOES BACK TO THE WOMB": THE DEMEDICALIZATION OF FETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME, 1973-1992.
AFTER THE CRASH.
Keeping up with technology.
Author Wayne Turk hits the mark.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters