Gender Differences in Predrinking Behavior Among Nightclubs' Patrons

Authors

  • Mariana G. R. Santos,

    1. Department of Preventive Medicine, Section of Epidemiology, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
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  • Angela T. Paes,

    1. Department of Information in Health, Section of Statistics, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
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  • Adriana Sanudo,

    1. Department of Preventive Medicine, Section of Biostatistics, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
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  • Solange Andreoni,

    1. Department of Preventive Medicine, Section of Biostatistics, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
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  • Zila M. Sanchez

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Preventive Medicine, Section of Epidemiology, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
    • Reprint requests: Zila M. Sanchez, PhD, Department of Preventive Medicine, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Rua Botucatu, 740, 4° andar, São Paulo, SP, Brazil. Tel.: + 55 11989348282; E-mail: zila.sanchez@unifesp.br

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Abstract

Background

Drinking before entering nightclubs (predrinking) seems to be associated with an increase in alcohol-related harm. This study aims to investigate gender differences in predrinking behavior and to evaluate its association with risk behaviors practiced inside nightclubs.

Methods

Individual-level data were collected by a portal survey of 2,422 patrons at the entrance and 1,833 patrons at the exit of 31 nightclubs located at São Paulo, Brazil. The nightclubs were selected by 2-stage sampling with probability proportional to the establishments' capacity in the first stage and a systematic sample of patrons in the entrance line in the second stage. Breath alcohol concentration (BrAC) was measured at the entrance and exit. Face-to-face interviews identified predrinking characteristics and risk behaviors. Weighted analyses were stratified by gender.

Results

Predrinking was practiced by 49.2% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 42.7 to 55.8) of the male patrons and 29.0% (95% CI = 20.6 to 38.9) of the female patrons (p < 0.001) on the day of the interview. When considering only predrinkers, men and women showed similar BrAC at entrance and exit and similar proportion of alcoholic intoxication (BrAC ≥ 0.38 mg/l). In both genders, people who practiced predrinking on the day of the interview were more likely to drink inside the nightclub, compared to those who did not practice predrinking (p < 0.001). Among men, the practice of predrinking increased the chance of “drinking and driving” after leaving the nightclub (odds ratio [OR] = 6.9, 95% CI = 4.1–11.5, p < 0.001). Among women, the practice of predrinking increased the chances of experiencing sexual harassment in the nightclub (OR = 2.9, 95% CI = 1.3 to 6.6, p = 0.010).

Conclusions

Predrinking is more prevalent among men; however, men and women who engaged in predrinking have a similar pattern of alcohol consumption and exit BrAC. The fact that risk behaviors and illicit drug use were associated with predrinking but differ between genders suggests that a gender-specific approach should be used in tailored interventions to prevent alcohol-related harm in nightclubs.

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