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Article   |    
A Retrospective Study of Alcohol Use by VA Psychiatric Inpatients
Connie Higgins Vogel; Marjorie F. Blom
Psychiatric Services 1985; doi:
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The Veterans Administration Medical Center, Knoxville, Iowa 50138

1985 American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

Psychiatric inpatients are prone to the use of alcohol, often in attempts to self-medicate. A retrospective review of patient records in a Veterans Administration neuropsychiatric facility identified 28 patients for whom use of alcohol was documented while they were in the hospital; the number of episodes totaled 47. The patients tended to be young and unmarried and to have a diagnosis of scbizophrenia. The study found a trend toward underreporting of alcohol use by hospitalized patients because staff believe it to be an accepted part of adult life in American society. Possibly because staff do not identify alcohol use as a serious problem for psychiatric inpatients, it is not considered in treatment planning. The authors conclude with recommendations for management of inpatients who use alcohol.

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