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Journal Article

Citation

Robson WJ. Alcohol Alcohol. 1984; 19(2): 177-179.

Copyright

(Copyright © 1984, Oxford University Press)

DOI

unavailable

PMID

6497964

Abstract

Twenty patients between the ages of 11 and 15 years who presented at hospital in 1981 having ingested alcohol were studied. Two were poisoned by another person. The data on the 18 adolescents who poisoned themselves were analysed in detail. Three groups emerged: A--4 patients had drunk alone as an experiment, act of mischief or act of defiance; B--9 patients had been involved in peer group activity; C--5 patients had either made an attempt at suicide or a plea for help. There was a predominance of females. The average age was 13 years 5 months. Most alcohol was obtained from the patients' own homes. The higher-proof beverages caused most problems. Four patients in group C combined alcohol with medicinal drugs and 2 of these had had previous episodes of self-poisoning. No clear evidence of habitual drinking emerged. Only those 8 patients who had emotional or behavioural problems prior to admission were followed up. The importance of the home as a source of alcohol and the pre-existing instability of many of the adolescents indicates that in the management of these young people and in any preventative work the whole family must be involved.


Language: en

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