Gender differences in medical presentation and detection of patients with a history of alcohol abuse or dependence

Nancy Amodei, Janet F. Williams, J. Paul Scale, Maria L. Alvarado

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Scopus citations


Women and men with alcohol use disorders differ in many respects. A retrospective medical record review of 132 patients was performed to determine outpatient clinic utilization, presentation patterns and physician actions related to patient gender and lifetime DIS-status. Women, irrespective of DIS-status, utilized outpatient health care services more often than did DIS-positive or negative men. Of 16 specific alcohol-related complaints, gender differences were only detected for trauma. DIS-positive men were more likely to have had an alcohol history taken during the preceding 12 months than were DIS-positive women. Sedatives/minor tranquilizers were most often prescribed to DIS-positive women. This study supports the need in primary care settings for more screening to detect and diagnose alcohol-abusing patients, particularly women. Physicians should routinely screen for alcohol abuse before prescribing sedatives or minor tranquilizers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19-31
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Addictive Diseases
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 23 1996


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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