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Y. van Gils, E. Franck, S.J.P. van Alphen, E. Dierckx

J Aging Res Clin Practice 2019;8:28-38

Objective: This study examine the prevalence, characteristics and associated factors of alcohol use and alcohol related problems among Belgian community dwelling older adults. Design: Retrospective cross-sectional study by extensive examination survey. Setting: The participants were questioned in their homes or in community centres. Participants: Overall, 1,366 adults ≥65 years participated in this study. Method: Information about self-reported alcohol use during the past year, Health Related Quality of Life (HRQL) and alcohol related problems was gathered with respectively the AUDIT, SF36 and MAST-G. Results: Of the total sample, 84.4% reported alcohol consumption. Using the NIAAA guidelines, the overall prevalence for at risk drinking was 26.6% and for binge drinking 14.8%, both risky alcohol patterns. Logistic regression analyses were performed on the drinking sample to determine the predictors associated with at risk drinking, binge drinking and hazardous drinking. Being male, a smoker of former smoker and living alone were associated with at risk drinking. Being male, being aged 65-74 years, being a smoker, reporting polypharmacy, MCS and having recent loss experience were associated with binge drinking. More than 25% of respondents were classified as hazardous drinking (score ≥5 on MAST-G). Associated factors with hazardous drinking were being male, having a family history of alcohol problems, PCS and MCS. Conclusions: The prevalence rates for at risk alcohol patterns and alcohol related problems were higher than in previous studies. As older adults are more vulnerable to the adverse consequences of alcohol use, awareness about alcohol use should be raised among older adults, as well as amongst health care givers and researchers.

Y. van Gils ; E. Franck ; S.J.P. van Alphen ; E. Dierckx (2019): Prevalence and characteristics associated with alcohol use and alcohol related problems in community dwelling older adults. The Journal of Aging Research and Clinical Practice (JARCP). http://dx.doi.org/10.14283/jarcp.2019.6

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