Detecting alcohol problems in drug-dependent women of childbearing age

Dace S. Svikis, Mary E. McCaul, Nancy A. Haug, Tamara Y. Boney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Alcohol problems frequently go undetected in drug-dependent individuals. In women of childbearing age, the consequences of unrecognized alcohol problems can be severe. Unfortunately, many drug treatment programs lack resources to conduct formal diagnostic interviews with all program admissions. Using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-III-R (SCID) as the 'gold standard,' the present study compared four clinical tools for assessing alcohol problems in a drug dependent population. Rates of detecting alcohol problems varied widely (15-76%). The Addiction Severity Index (ASI) and the Family Alcohol and Drug Survey (FADS) yielded the highest sensitivities (96% and 83%, respectively) and specificities (94% and 92%, respectively). Since these instruments require less staff training and background education than the SCID, they offer cost-effective alternatives for efficient screening and assessment of alcohol problems in drug-dependent populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)563-575
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Volume22
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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