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Journal Article


Cherpitel CJ, Ye Y, Bond J, Borges G. Alcohol Clin. Exp. Res. 2003; 27(11): 1805-1812.


Public Health Institute, Alcohol Research Group, Berkeley, California 94709, USA.


(Copyright © 2003, John Wiley and Sons)






BACKGROUND: Whereas a substantial literature exists documenting the association of alcohol and injuries, causal associations are less well established. METHODS: The relationship of drinking-in-the-event variables with attributing a causal association of alcohol consumption and the injury event was examined by using meta-analysis across 13 emergency room studies from 8 countries included in the Emergency Room Collaborative Alcohol Analysis Project. RESULTS: Pooled odds ratios for both log-transformed blood alcohol concentration at the time of the emergency room visit and the amount of alcohol consumed in the 6 hr before injury were positively predictive (1.19 and 1.80, respectively) and heterogeneous across studies. Effect size changed little when age and gender were controlled. When stratifying on reporting five or more drinks on an occasion during the last year (5+ yearly drinkers), the amount consumed was positively predictive of reporting a casual association of drinking and injury only for 5+ yearly drinkers. The effect size of feeling drunk at the time of injury, controlling for the amount of alcohol consumed, was positively predictive (2.04) but heterogeneous across studies. Meta-analysis regression found the level to which alcohol is consumed in a detrimental pattern to be a significant predictor of blood alcohol concentration, and of the amount consumed and feeling drunk at the time of injury, on causal attribution, with a lower detrimental pattern level with a larger effect size. CONCLUSIONS: The association of acute use of alcohol on causal attribution may be affected by chronic use to some extent, but this association is negatively affected by the degree to which a society exhibits harmful drinking patterns.


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