A study on the characteristics of alcoholics attending the "Alcoholics in treatment" clubs, a community and family-oriented programme against alcoholism, has been conducted in the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region, Northeastern Italy. A total of 598 individuals (93% of those contacted) completed the questionnaire, 431 (72%) were males and 167 (28%) were females. With respect to marital status, never married men and widows seemed to be at high_ risk of alcoholism. Total alcohol consumption in males significantly exceeded that in females (X122 trend 18.86 p <0.001) and this excess mainly seemed to be primarily associated with wine (X12 trend 32.81 p <0.001). Younger individuals (<50 yrs) tended to begin drinking earlier and to report higher intake from alcoholic beverages other than wine as compared to older individuals (12 trend = 25.25 p <0.001). A high percentage of males (30%) reported heavier alcohol intake in their father as compared to themselves while only 12 of females reported heavier intake in their mother as compared to themselves. Health complaints seemed to be the chief reason which prompted individuals, particularly above age 50, to attend "Alcoholics in treatment" clubs but awareness of alcohol-related health problems played a substantial role, as shown by the very common overestimation of alcohol as the primary cause of death in Italy by the individuals attending the club.
- Alcoholics anonymous
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