Effects of outpatient treatment for problem drinkers

Stephen A. Maisto, Linda C. Sobell, Mark B. Sobell, Barbara Sanders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


This study was designed to investigate the effects of treatment length restriction and follow-up interview style on the outcomes of male alcohol abusers in outpatient treatment. Subjects (N = 48) were randomly assigned to one of four independent groups based on the factorial combination of the two independent variables. Extensive pretreatment data were collected about subjects′ drinking and related behaviors, and subjects were then scheduled for monthly interviews. Subjects were interviewed for 18 months postadmission concerning these same factors. Subjects′ self-reports were compared with collateral reports, official records, and breath tests. Outcome results showed no effects of follow-up interview style or treatment length restriction on drinking behavior and employment outcomes. However, subjects′ drinking behavior postadmission was considerably improved compared to their pretreatment ethanol consumption. Temporal analyses of the drinking behavior data showed that it was possible to predict drinking behavior, especially of the same type, within pretreatment and postadmission intervals. However, it was not possible to predict postadmission drinking from pretreatment drinking. Treatment implications of the findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)131-149
Number of pages19
JournalAmerican Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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