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J Subst Abuse Treat. 2008 Jun;34(4):464-70. Epub 2007 Sep 14.

Interpersonal violence exposure and alcohol treatment utilization among medical inpatients with alcohol dependence.

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Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02118, USA.


The goal of this study was to examine the association between interpersonal violence exposure and utilization of alcohol treatment after medical hospitalizations among adults with alcohol dependence. We analyzed data collected from a prospective cohort of 238 adults with alcohol dependence who were inpatients in a large urban hospital. Participants who reported interpersonal violence victimization had 1.6 times the odds (adjusted odds ratio = 1.64, 95% confidence interval = 0.92-2.91) of receiving alcohol treatment during the year after hospitalization compared to participants with no violence exposure. Recent (past 3 months) exposure to violence was not more strongly related to receipt of treatment than any lifetime violence exposure. Results suggest that a history of interpersonal violence victimization may be associated with an increased odds of alcohol treatment utilization following a medical hospitalization. Therefore, clinicians should be optimistic about identifying and referring patients who have experienced interpersonal violence to alcohol treatment. Moreover, given the potentially high prevalence of interpersonal violence exposure among inpatient populations at large urban hospitals, alcohol treatment providers should develop methods to address both alcohol dependence and violence recovery.

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