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Web Survey Bibliography

Title Awareness and Treatment of Alcohol Dependence in Japan: Results from Internet-Based Surveys in Persons, Family, Physicians and Society
Source Alcohol & Alcoholism, 49, 4, pp. 439-446
Year 2014
Access date 27.08.2014
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Aims: To understand current awareness of, and views on, treatment of alcohol dependence in Japan.

Methods: (a) Nationwide internet-based survey of 520 individuals, consisting of 52 diagnosed alcohol-dependent (AD) persons, 154 potentially alcohol-dependent (ADP) persons, 104 family members and 106 friends/colleagues of AD persons, and 104 general individuals, derived from a consumer panel where the response rate was 64.3%. We enquired into awareness about the treatment of alcohol dependence and patient pathways through the healthcare network. (b) Nationwide internet-based survey of physicians (response rate 10.1% (2395/23,695) to ask 200 physicians about their management of alcohol use disorders).

Results: We deduced that 10% of alcohol-dependent Japanese persons had ever been diagnosed with alcohol dependence, with only 3% ever treated. Regarding putative treatment goals, 20-25% of the AD and ADP persons would prefer to attempt to abstain, while 60-75% preferred 'reduced drinking.' A half of the responding physicians considered abstinence as the primary treatment goal in alcohol dependence, while 76% considered reduced drinking as an acceptable goal.

Conclusion: AD and ADP persons in Japan have low 'disease awareness' defined as 'understanding of signs, symptoms and consequences of alcohol use disorders,' which is in line with the overseas situation. The Japanese drinking culture and stigma toward alcohol dependence may contribute to such low disease awareness and current challenging treatment environment. While abstinence remains the preferred treatment goal among physicians, reduced drinking seems to be an acceptable alternative treatment goal to many persons and physicians in Japan.

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Year of publication2014
Bibliographic typeJournal article