What General Psychiatrists Ask Addiction Psychiatrists: A Review of 381 Substance Abuse Consultations in a Psychiatric Hospital


McLean Hospital, 115 Mill Street, Belmont, MA 02478.


We reviewed the records of 381 consecutive substance abuse consultations completed by the Substance Abuse Consultation Service (SACS) of McLean Hospital to ascertain 1) the most frequent reasons why general psychiatrists consulted the SACS, and 2) the clinical characteristics of these patients. The most frequent reasons for consultation were to make aftercare recommendations (66.1%) or to make (19.7%) or clarify (6.3%) a substance use disorder (SUD) diagnosis. Mood disorders were the most prevalent co-occurring psychiatric disorder; alcohol use disorders were the most prevalent SUDs. The findings indicate the potential utility of a substance abuse consultation service in a psychiatric hospital.