Comparison of consumption effects of brief interventions for hazardous drinking elderly

Adam J. Gordon, Joseph Conigliaro, Stephen A. Maisto, Melissa McNeil, Kevin L. Kraemer, Mary E. Kelley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


We sought to determine if Brief Interventions [Bis, Motivational Enhancement (ME), and Brief Advice (BA)] reduced alcohol consumption among hazardous alcohol drinking elderly (65 years or older) and whether the elderly responded similarly to younger populations. In 12 primary care offices from October 1995 to December 1997, we screened 13,438 patients of whom 2702 were elderly (180 were hazardous drinkers). Forty-five elderly enrollees were randomized to receive ME (n = 18), BA (n = 12), and Standard Care (SC, n = 12). At baseline, the elderly drank more alcohol and abstained fewer days than the younger cohort (p < 0.05). During the year, the elderly in ME, BA, and SC intervention arms increased the number of days abstained, decreased the number of drinks per day, and reduced the number of total days per month drinking. There were trends toward decreases in the alcohol consumption measures in the ME and BA treatment arms compared to SC. The elderly's response to all interventions was similar to that of the younger cohort. This study suggests that hazardous alcohol consumption in the elderly is common and that Bis reduce alcohol consumption in the elderly similar to younger populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1017-1035
Number of pages19
JournalSubstance Use and Misuse
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2003


  • Aged
  • Alcohol drinking
  • Counseling
  • Early interventions
  • Hazardous drinking
  • Randomized controlled trial

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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