Background and Objectives
Alcohol use is often overlooked and underestimated among patients recovered from substance dependence. The prevalence and correlates of alcohol use disorder (AUD) among adults recovered from substance use disorders (SUDs) are estimated in this study.
A nationally representative cross‐sectional analysis of the National Epidemiological Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions Wave‐III was used in this study. Survey respondents, aged 18 or older, who recovered from SUDs, based on Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM‐5) criteria (n = 2061 unweighted), were included. A total of three comparison groups were identified using DSM‐5 criteria (1) current AUD, (2) former AUD, and (3) never had AUD. The prevalence of these groups was estimated; medical and psychiatric comorbidities and health‐related quality of life were compared; and factors associated with having a current AUD when compared with those with former AUD and those who never had AUD were examined, controlling for other covariates.
About 5.7% of US adults, nationally representative of 14.2 million, have been reported to have recovered from past SUDs. Of these, 28.9% met criteria for current AUD and 48.4% had former AUD. When compared with those who never had AUD, factors associated with having a current AUD included the following: living in urban areas (P = .019), having a bipolar 1 disorder (P < .001), and a history of lifetime incarceration (P = .004).
Discussion and Conclusion
Nearly one‐third of adults recovered from SUDs had current AUD, and several behavioral factors were associated with having a current AUD when compared with those who never had AUD.
Our study highlights the substantial risk of AUD in adults who have successfully recovered from SUDs. (Am J Addict 2020;00:00–00)