Evaluation Of The Effectiveness Of An Intervention With Alcohol Problem Drinkers In General Practice In France

Author(s): 
Huas D, Bouix JC, Pessione F, Rueff B and Allemand H.
CNGE. Paris (France).
Text: 
Objective. In international literature, 7 publications have demonstrated that a simple intervention on problem drinkers by the general practitioner increases the percentage of improved drinking habit in patients from 25'/'o to 40%.
The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of a brief intervention on problem drinkers in France.
Methods. In a multicentre prospective study, the GPs were randomised, with or without a specific training in alcohology and brief intervention. The patients included were males over 18, declaring a weekly consumption of over 28 glasses of alcohol, without current or past problem of alcohol dependence. After a one year and 3 year period the recruitment (June to December 1995), the patients and the inclusion criteria were examined. The main criterion was self declared consumption.
Results. 95 GPs recruited 541 problem drinkers. A year later, 497 files were sent back by 88 GPs of which 419 were eligible. The mean self declared consumption was 39.6 glasses per week for the intervention group and 36.1 for the control group. A year later, the self declared consumption decreased by 10.9 glasses per week for the intervention group, and decreased with 9.2 glasses for the control group. The difference is not statistically significant.
Conclusions. Many hypotheses could explain this lack of difference between the 2 groups. Contrary to the above mentioned studies, in France as well as in Spain, a brief intervention is not enough to decrease the self declare consumption. Thus, we could discuss these international differences.
Literature: 
Evaluation of the effectiveness of an intervention with alcohol problem drinkers in general practice in France