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Acta Psychiatr Scand. 2009 Aug;120(2):85-96. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0447.2009.01385.x. Epub 2009 Apr 3.

Prevalence of alcohol use disorders in schizophrenia--a systematic review and meta-analysis.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Oulu and Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland.



Our aim was to present recent studies of alcohol use disorders (AUDs) in patients with schizophrenia, estimate overall prevalence and characteristics affecting the prevalence of AUDs.


We conducted a search using three literature databases and a manual search on articles published in 1996-2008. Meta-regression was used to study how prevalence is affected by different study characteristics. Articles that reported diagnoses according to DSM or ICD diagnostic systems were included.


Altogether 60 studies met our criteria. The median of current AUD prevalence was 9.4% (inter-quartile range, IQR 4.6-19.0, 18 studies) and median of lifetime AUD prevalence 20.6% (IQR 12.0-34.5, 47 studies). In studies using DSM-III-R median prevalence was higher than that in studies using DSM-IV, ICD-9 or ICD-10 (32/17/11/6%).


Approximately every fifth patient with schizophrenia had lifetime AUD diagnosis. When contrasted with the most recent review, there might be a descending trend in AUD prevalence in patients with schizophrenia.

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