Detection and diagnosis of alcoholism in hospitalized patients

Zaheer Aslam, Joseph Westermeyer

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Objective: The prevalence of alcoholism is high in hospitalized patients. Failure to identify alcoholism in its early stages results in increased morbidity and mortality, as well as social, economic, and legal problems. This paper reviews the methodology used in previous studies on the prevalence of alcoholism and to assess trends in detection, diagnosis, and treatment of alcoholism by physicians in hospitalized patients. Method: A Medline literature search was conducted covering January 1968 to December 2001. Conclusion: Alcoholism remains as highly under diagnosed and under treated illness today as it was 2 to 3 decades ago. The Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test (MAST) and its shorter version SMAST are cost effective methods of screening hospitalized patients for alcoholism. Health professionals should get basic training in screening patients for alcoholism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)278-285
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Applied Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Nov 1 2004


  • Alcoholism
  • Hospitalization
  • Prevalence


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