2019 Volume 10 Pages 1-9
Purpose: There has been little research into the effects of therapies for alcohol dependence in Japanese patients with depression and drinking problems. The aim of this study was to: 1) assess the prevalence of problem drinking in patients with depression and 2) evaluate the association between depression severity and problem drinking.
Methods: This cross-sectional survey was conducted in Japanese patients aged ≥ 20 years old with depression. Survey 1 identified those who engaged in habitual drinking and these individuals completed survey 2, which assessed alcohol consumption, depression severity and alcohol dependence or abuse.
Results: Overall, 2354 patients completed survey 1 and 425 patients completed survey 2. Of the patients who completed survey 2, 112 (26.4%; 95% confidence interval 22.2, 30.8) had alcohol dependence. Survey 2 showed that the severity of depression was significantly associated with the prevalence of alcohol dependence (p < 0.0001), suspected alcohol dependence (p = 0.0001) and high or very high drinking risk level (DRL; p < 0.0001). Univariate logistic regression analysis showed that alcohol dependence (p < 0.0001), suspected alcohol dependence (p = 0.0112), high DRL (p = 0.0027) and very high DRL (p = 0.0004) were significantly associated with severity of depression.
Conclusions: Among patients with depression who engaged in habitual drinking, the prevalence of alcohol dependence and suspected alcohol dependence were substantially higher than in the general population. Depression severity was significantly associated with alcohol dependence, suspected alcohol dependence and high or very high DRL.