Treatment outcome and its predictors among Asian problem drinkers
Article first published online: 9 OCT 2012
© 2012 Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs
Drug and Alcohol Review
Volume 32, Issue 2, pages 178–186, March 2013
How to Cite
[Treatment outcome and its predictors among Asian problem drinkers. Drug Alcohol Rev 2013;32:178–186], , , , , , .
- Issue published online: 5 MAR 2013
- Article first published online: 9 OCT 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 31 AUG 2012
- Manuscript Received: 5 JUN 2012
- Ministry of Health, Singapore
- treatment outcome;
- alcohol use disorder;
- problem drinker
Introduction and Aims
Evidence of treatment effectiveness for alcohol use disorders (AUD) have emerged predominantly from Western studies, using highly controlled trials that may not reflect real-world settings. This paper examines treatment outcome and its predictors among Asian problem drinkers participating in a treatment outcome monitoring program at an addiction treatment centre in Singapore.
Design and Methods
Data were collected at intake and 3, 6 and 12 months, although the focus of this paper is on reliable change at 3 months among the 70% who were followed up. Five hundred and forty-one AUD-diagnosed outpatients presenting for treatment, over a 2-year period, were assessed on drinking behaviours and administered the Addiction Severity Index-Lite, Personal Wellbeing Index (PWI) and Treatment Perceptions Questionnaire.
At 3 months, drinking days, alcohol units and alcohol use severity had more than halved and 69% were either abstinent or had reliably reduced their drinking days. Baseline drinking days and treatment satisfaction predicted 3-month drinking frequency but not severity. Positive alcohol outcomes observed at 3 months were sustained among those followed up until 12 months. Mean PWI score improved significantly and fell within the ‘normal’ range. Treatment satisfaction also emerged as the only significant predictor of reliable positive change in both drinking days and PWI score.
Discussion and Conclusions
Significant reductions in drinking frequency and severity are possible for Asian problem drinkers after 12 weeks of outpatient treatment. The identified predictors suggest that more frequent drinkers and patients with past/current psychiatric comorbidities may require a more intensive treatment approach to optimise treatment outcomes.