This is the first ever study conducted to assess the prevalence of problem alcohol use in the rural women of Telangana region of Andhra Pradesh.
To evaluate the prevalence of dependence and problem drinking, observe the factors that led to it and to monitor the effect of intervention in the form of psycho-education on their treatment seeking attitude.
Materials and Methods:
Cases were referred by the registrar from the Medicine Out-Patient Department using a three-item questionnaire for history of alcohol intake. Consecutive consenting female patients fulfilling the inclusion–exclusion criteria formed the sample. ICD-10 criteria and CAGE Questionnaire were used to assess dependence, problem drinking and co-morbid psychiatric illnesses. The socio-demographic data and the details regarding the nature and pattern of drinking and its complications were recorded using a semi-structured proforma. All patients were instructed to report at the end of 1 and 3 weeks for follow-up after a brief psycho-education regarding the problems of alcohol use.
Dependence was seen in 4.1% and problem drinking in 1%. Physical complications possibly due to alcohol were seen in 4.1% and psychiatric co-morbidity in 1%. Pregnancy drinking was recorded in 4.4%. Only 0.2% came for follow-up.
To conclude, there is a perceptible degree of problematic use of alcohol in the rural women of this region. Yet, none of them were seeking psychiatric help. The soaring number of pregnancy drinking needs further exploration. The poor psychiatric follow-up leads us to conclude that in this sample the perception of alcohol problem is very low.