28 June 2016 In Drinking & Eating Patterns

BACKGROUND: National estimates on per capita alcohol consumption are provided regularly by various sources and may have validity problems, so corrections are needed for monitoring and assessment purposes. Our objectives were to compare different alcohol availability estimates for Spain, to build the best estimate (actual consumption), characterize its time trend during 2001-2011, and quantify the extent to which other estimates (coverage) approximated actual consumption.

METHODS: Estimates were: alcohol availability from the Spanish Tax Agency (Tax Agency availability), World Health Organization (WHO availability) and other international agencies, self-reported purchases from the Spanish Food Consumption Panel, and self-reported consumption from population surveys. Analyses included calculating: between-agency discrepancy in availability, multisource availability (correcting Tax Agency availability by underestimation of wine and cider), actual consumption (adjusting multisource availability by unrecorded alcohol consumption/purchases and alcohol losses), and coverage of selected estimates. Sensitivity analyses were undertaken. Time trends were characterized by joinpoint regression.

RESULTS: Between-agency discrepancy in alcohol availability remained high in 2011, mainly because of wine and spirits, although some decrease was observed during the study period. The actual consumption was 9.5 l of pure alcohol/person-year in 2011, decreasing 2.3 % annually, mainly due to wine and spirits. 2011 coverage of WHO availability, Tax Agency availability, self-reported purchases, and self-reported consumption was 99.5, 99.5, 66.3, and 28.0 %, respectively, generally with downward trends (last three estimates, especially self-reported consumption). The multisource availability overestimated actual consumption by 12.3 %, mainly due to tourism imbalance.

CONCLUSIONS: Spanish estimates of per capita alcohol consumption show considerable weaknesses. Using uncorrected estimates, especially self-reported consumption, for monitoring or other purposes is misleading. To obtain conservative estimates of alcohol-attributable disease burden or heavy drinking prevalence, self-reported consumption should be shifted upwards by more than 85 % (91 % in 2011) of Tax Agency or WHO availability figures. The weaknesses identified can probably also be found worldwide, thus much empirical work remains to be done to improve estimates of per capita alcohol consumption.

28 June 2016 In Cancer

OBJECTIVE: The main objective of this study is to analyse the role of alcohol consumption on lung cancer risk in people who have never smoked.

METHODS: We conducted a systematic review of the scientific literature following the PRISMA statement. We searched Medline, EMBASE and CINAHL using different combinations of MeSH terms and free text. We included cohort studies, pooled cohort studies and case-control studies comprising at least 25 anatomopathologically-confirmed diagnoses of lung cancer cases, a sample size larger than 100 individuals and more than five years of follow-up for cohort studies. We excluded studies that did not specifically report results for never smokers. We developed a quality score to assess the quality of the included papers and we ultimately included 14 investigations with a heterogeneous design and methodology.

RESULTS: Results for alcohol consumption and lung cancer risk in never smokers are inconclusive; however, several studies showed a dose-response pattern for total alcohol consumption and for spirits. Heterogeneous results were found for wine and beer.

CONCLUSION: No clear effect is observed for alcohol consumption. Due to the limited evidence, no conclusion can be drawn for beer or wine consumption. There is little research available on the effect of alcohol on lung cancer risk for people who have never smoked, and more studies are urgently needed on this topic.

17 May 2016 In General Health

BACKGROUND: The purpose of our study was to determine whether alcohol intake influences short-term mortality in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI), using a comprehensive trauma database.

METHODS: We collected data from 7 emergency departments (EDs) between June 1, 2008 and May 31, 2010, using the same data form. Cases were included if they met the following criteria: (i) older than 15 and (ii) injuries including TBI. Demographics and outcomes were compared between patients with and without alcohol intake. We present the risk of mortality using hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals.

RESULTS: A total of 76,596 trauma patients visited the EDs during the study period; 12,980 patients were older than 15 and had TBI. There were 4,009 (30.9%) patients in the alcohol-intake group, of whom 3,306 (82.5%) patients were male, 1,450 (36.2%) patients were moved by ambulance, and 1,218 (30.4%) patients' injuries were intentional. The most frequent injury mechanism was falling down with alcohol intake and blunt injury without alcohol intake. Mortality rate was 1.0% with alcohol intake and 2.0% without alcohol intake. After adjusting for all factors related to mortality, the hazard ratio of mortality was 0.72 in the alcohol-intake group.

CONCLUSIONS: Mortality rate due to TBI in the alcohol-intake group appears to be lower compared to that in the no-alcohol-intake group after adjusting for main confounding variables.

22 March 2016 In Drinking & Eating Patterns

PURPOSE: Heavy episodic (i.e., "binge") drinking (i.e., >/=five drinks/occasion) is highly prevalent among young adults; those who binge do so four times per month on average, consuming nine drinks on average on each occasion. Although it is well established that chronic heavy drinking (>/=two alcoholic beverages per day) increases the risk of hypertension, the relationship between binge drinking and blood pressure is not well described. Our aim was to describe the relationship between frequency of binge drinking, both current (at age 24 years) and past (at age 20 years), and systolic blood pressure (SBP) at age 24 years.

METHODS: Participants (n = 756) from the longitudinal Nicotine Dependence in Teens study reported alcohol consumption at ages 20 and 24 years and had SBP measured at age 24 years. We examined the association between binge drinking and SBP using multiple linear regression, controlling for sex, race/ethnicity, education, monthly drinking in high school, cigarette smoking, and body mass index.

RESULTS: Compared to nonbinge drinkers, SBP at age 24 years was 2.61 [.41, 4.82] mm Hg higher among current monthly bingers and 4.03 [1.35, 6.70] mm Hg higher among current weekly bingers. SBP at age 24 years was 2.90 [.54, 5.25] mm Hg higher among monthly bingers at age 20 years and 3.64 [.93, 6.35] mm Hg higher among weekly bingers at age 20 years, compared to nonbinge drinkers.

CONCLUSIONS: Frequent binge drinking at ages 20 and 24 years is associated with higher SBP at age 24 years and may be implicated in the development of hypertension.

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