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A retrospective analysis of ethnic and gender differences in alcohol consumption among emergency department patients: A cross-sectional study

  • Author(s): Lotfipour, S
  • Cisneros, V
  • Ogbu, UC
  • McCoy, CE
  • Barrios, C
  • Anderson, CL
  • Hoonpongsimanont, W
  • Alix, K
  • Chakravarthy, B
  • et al.
Abstract

© 2015 Lotfipour et al. Background: Previous studies of alcohol use have recognized several trends in consumption patterns among gender and age yet few have examined ethnic differences. This study examines the intra- and inter-ethnic differences in alcohol consumption among a population of patients seen in the emergency department. Methods: This is a cross-sectional study conducted in the emergency department in a large urban setting. Information on drinking behavior and ethnicity was collected using the Computerized Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention (CASI) tool. We explored differences in drinking patterns using a multivariate multinomial logistic regression model. Results: We analyzed the drinking habits of 2,444 patients surveyed between November 2012 and May 2014. The results indicate that when compared to non-Hispanic whites, Asians have the lowest odds of drinking within normal limits or excessively, followed by other Latinos, and Mexicans. Age and gender consistently showed statistically significant associations with alcohol-use. The odds of drinking within normal limits or excessively are inversely associated with age and were lower among females. The predicted probabilities show a marked gender-specific difference in alcohol use both between and within ethnic/racial groups. They also highlight an age-related convergence in alcohol use between men and women within ethnic groups. Discussion: The results of this study show intra-racial/ethnic variability associated with sex and education. The highlighted differences within and between ethnic groups reinforce the need to use refined categories when examining alcohol use among minorities. Conclusion: The results of this study confirm some alcohol consumption trends among ethnic minorities observed in literature. It provides empirical evidence of the marked gender differences and highlights an age-related convergence for gender-specific alcohol use. Health-care personnel should be aware of these differences when screening and counseling.

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