May 26, 2009
Level of response to alcohol, risk factor
A U.S. doctor says teens who report they
drink others under the table may be at higher risk of alcoholism.
Dr. Marc Schuckit of the Alcohol Research Center at the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System and the University of California, San Diego, says a low level of reaction to alcohol has been found to be a unique risk factor for alcohol use disorders across adulthood and not simply a reflection of a broader range of risk factors.
We showed that a low level of reaction at age 20 predicts later heavy drinking and alcoholism even if you control for all these other predictors of alcohol problems at age 20, Schuckit says in a statement.
A person with low level of reaction may tend to drink more each time they imbibe, he says, but identifying the risk early in life may allow ways to decrease the risk.
The study does not mean not having a low level of reaction means not developing alcoholism, Schuckit added.
The findings are scheduled to be published in the September issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.