Short Tilte:Alcohol abuse/dependence in motor vehicle crash victims presenting to the emergency department
Journal:Academic Emergency Medicine
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):97, 4, 4, 256-262
Prospective cohort study seeks to determine the prevalence of current alcohol abuse/alcohol dependence (AA/AD) among the full injury range of emergency department (ED), motor vehicle crash (MVC) patients, and in addition, compares AA/AD and non-AA/AD patient characteristics. From 1,161 patients studied, the weighted prevalence of current AA/AD was 22.5%; 53% of these patients were released from the ED. Almost 45% of the patients with current AA/AD did not have a positive blood/alcohol content (BAC) at the time of ED evaluation (range 1-325 minutes after crash; average 58 minutes). When controlling for BAC and AA/AD, greater injury severity and culpability were associated with a positive BAC, but not with current AA/AD. It was concluded that almost 23% of ED MVC patients have current AA/AD, and BAC testing does not accurately identify these patients. Intervention strategies must be directed to both admitted and released patients. This document is included in NCDDR's Guide to Substance Abuse and Disability Resources produced by NIDRR Grantees, 2nd Ed, number D.4.