Harms to adults from others' heavy drinking in five Indian states

Collaborators Group on Epidemiological Study of Patterns and Consequences of Alcohol Misuse in India

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aims: The aims of this study were to assess a wide range of alcohol-related harms from known heavy drinkers in Indian respondents' lives, and to assess respondents' characteristics and drinking patterns associated with reporting these harms. Methods: Household interviews were administered in five Indian states from October 2011 to May 2012. For the secondary data analyses in this study, participants were Indians, ages 15-70, who self-reported having a heavy drinker in their lives (n = 5,375). We assessed the proportion of respondents reporting seventeen types of alcohol-related harms from a heavy drinker. Results: Approximately 83% of respondents reported at least one alcohol-related harm from a heavy drinker in their lives. Twenty-five percent of respondents reported physical harm, 6% reported sexual harm and 50% reported emotional harm or neglect. Controlling for other factors, being in the upper income quartiles was associated with reporting ≥5 harm types. Among females, being age 25-39 and married/cohabitating predicted reporting ≥5 harm types, while among males, being age 25-39 or age 40-70 and living in a rural area increased the odds. Among females, binge drinkers had 46% lower odds of reporting ≥5 harm types than abstainers; among males, binge drinkers had 54% greater odds. Conclusion: Regardless of respondents' own drinking pattern, a substantial proportion of respondents reported experiencing a range of harms from a known heavy drinker; interventions are needed to reduce these harms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-185
Number of pages9
JournalAlcohol and Alcoholism
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 7 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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