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Salud Publica Mex. 1999 Jan-Feb;41(1):3-11.

[Alcoholic beverage consumption in the patients of the emergency services of the city of Pachuca, Hidalgo].

[Article in Spanish]

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  • 1Instituto Mexicano de Psiquiatría, México, D.F., México.



Prevalence of alcohol consumption and abuse among patients with medical emergencies, accidents and violence, attending an emergency room in one of three public health hospitals in Pachuca, Hidalgo, was studied.


Patients answered a questionnaire and their blood alcohol was measured on their first visit to the emergency room. The questionnaire gathered socio-demographic data, patterns of alcohol consumption and included scales for heavy and dependent drinkers, such as the CAGE and the alcohol use disorders identification test (AUDIT). Injured and non-injured patients were compared with the chi 2 statistics.


A total of 1,511 patients were evaluated. Alcohol consumption was higher in those attending for accidents or violence than in medical patients. Positive blood alcohol levels were found in 17.7% of injured patients and 15.8% reported alcohol consumption 6 hours prior to the accident. According to the CAGE, 9.2% of the patients were alcohol-dependent, and 10.9% were heavy drinkers according to the AUDIT.


Alcohol consumption, especially among emergency room patients attending for accidents or injuries is high. Preventive measures are indispensable to diminish social and individual costs of alcohol abuse in this population.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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