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J Stud Alcohol. 1994 Jul;55(4):471-4.

Screening for problem drinkers in a general population survey in Spain by use of the CAGE scale.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Valladolid, Spain.


The CAGE scale has been used as a screening device for problem drinkers in a general population survey. The study was conducted in the fall of 1992 on 2,500 individuals, aged 14-70 years, who live in the region of Castile and Leon (Spain). Alcohol was consumed at least once a week by 51.3% of those surveyed. A total of 136 drinkers (10.6% of "weekly" drinkers, 5.4% of total sample) had positive CAGE scores, as determined by two or more affirmative answers, 120 men (14.3%) and 16 women (3.6%). Those with CAGE positive scores consumed a daily mean of 57.5 grams of pure alcohol per day. The utility of the CAGE scale in a general population survey and the difficulties in applying it are discussed.

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