Tag Archives: Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

Dr. David Sleet, Senior Associate at Bizzell Co-authors Article on Alcohol Harms in Young Adults in The Lancet

A new analysis from the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, Seattle, suggests that for young adults aged 15-39, there are no health benefits to drinking alcohol, only harms. The harms they are most likely to experience are injuries.

The study, published in The Lancet July 16, 2022, (doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(22)00847-9), used data from the Global Burden of Diseases, a project based at the University of Washington in Seattle that tracks health trends worldwide and produces comprehensive data on the causes of illness and death in the world.

Both males and females under age 40 risked health loss from alcohol use, even when consuming small amounts of alcohol. But for those older than 40, consuming small amounts of alcohol (such as 1-2 glasses of wine daily) can provide some health benefits, yet health risks vary by age and region.

David Sleet, Ph.D., one of the co-authors of the article and a Senior Associate for Injury Prevention at The Bizzell Group (Bizzell), noted that “We need stronger interventions tailored towards younger individuals to reduce the substantial global health loss, particularly from injuries, attributable to alcohol use.”

The study’s authors call for alcohol consumption guidelines to be revised to emphasize that health risks of alcohol use differ by age, stressing that the level of alcohol consumption recommended by many existing guidelines is too high for young people. They also call for policies targeting males under age 40, who are most likely to use alcohol harmfully.

The study was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

“I would like to congratulate Dr. Sleet and the other contributing authors on the publication of the report in The Lancet. As alcohol sales have soared during the pandemic, the long-term health risks of heavy drinking including brain and liver damage, heart disease, digestive disease, and mental health disorders have increased. I urge all Americans to fight the deadly epidemic of alcohol use and abuse, particularly among adolescents and young adults” said Anton C. Bizzell, M.D., President & CEO of Bizzell.

To date, the publication has received national media attention, with USA Today, and The Guardian covering the report.

To read the reviews, please see below:

The Behavioral Health Advancement Resource Center (BHARC) is an authoritative source for behavioral health information, insights, technical assistance, training, and innovative tools. BHARC is a mechanism to share evidence-based behavioral health interventions and best practices. The BHARC Advisory Council consists of experts in substance use, mental health, clinical trials, pharmaceuticals, and healthcare standards and quality.

About Bizzell
Established in 2010, Bizzell is U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) HUBZone certified strategy, consulting, and technology firm with a mission to improve lives and accelerate change. Bizzell develops innovative solutions to some of the most critical issues of our time such as health care services equity, global health, workforce innovation and other urgent needs facing the world. Under the leadership of founder, Anton C. Bizzell, MD, the company has grown into a thriving firm headquartered in New Carrollton, Maryland with staff and offices in various regions around the country including California, Colorado, and Georgia, and globally in Africa, Asia, and Central America. Learn more about how we develop data-driven, research-informed, innovative solutions to complex-real-world challenges: www.thebizzellgroup.com.

GBD 2020 Alcohol Collaborators. Population-level risks of alcohol consumption by amount, geography, age, sex, and year: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2020.

Lancet   2022 Jul 16;400(10347):185-235. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(22)00847-9. PMID: 35843246 PMCID: PMC9289789

How We Can Work Together to Fight Alcoholism

How We Can Work Together to Fight Alcoholism

April is Alcohol Awareness Month. In “How We Can Work Together to Fight Alcoholism,” published online in Psychology Today, Dr. Anton C. Bizzell urges all Americans to fight the deadly epidemic of alcohol use and abuse among both adults and adolescents. He notes that one in 12 adults abuse or are dependent on alcohol and that 885,000 young people ages 12-17 have alcohol use disorder. Alcohol sales soared during the pandemic, Dr. Bizzell points out, and online happy hours may have played a role. He suggests companies host a virtual dessert party or scavenger hunt instead. Parents can set a good example for their children and can avail themselves of resources at www.StopAlcoholAbuse.gov. The long-term health risks of heavy drinking include brain and liver damage, heart disease, malnutrition, and mental health disorders, Dr. Bizzell notes.

Read more: Psychology Today

Alcohol Use Disorder: Hope for Recovery

Alcohol Use Disorder: Hope for Recovery

Written by: Anton Bizzell

Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is often referred to as the hidden substance use disorder (SUD). With alcohol use legal and socially acceptable in many settings, the symptoms of AUD may initially go unnoticed. Yet individuals with AUD may experience significant difficulties in their relationships, work, and health.

In a newly released analysis, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that over 70 percent of the adult population drank alcohol in 2017. Alcohol-related deaths more than doubled from 1999 to 2017. Overdoses of alcohol alone or in combination with other drugs accounted for 18 percent of the deaths in 2017; 31 percent of the deaths resulted from alcohol-related liver disease. Researchers note that the since this study examined only death certificate data, the actual number of lives lost may be significantly higher.

The death rates increased higher for women than for men, and gender differences persist in risks for alcohol-related cardiovascular disease, liver disease, and cancer. In addition, while prevalence of alcohol use and binge drinking remained stable for men, the prevalence of alcohol use increased by over 10 percent for women and binge drinking increased by over 23 percent among women.

The NIAAA screening tool for AUD includes questions a provider can use to diagnose whether an individual may have an AUD. Individuals who are struggling with their drinking, or families and friends concerned about their loved ones, can start by considering the following questions.

In the past year, have you:

  •  Tried to cut down or stop drinking more than once, but couldn’t?
  •  Found that drinking or being sick from drinking got in the way of you taking care of your home or your family, or caused problems at work or school?
  •  More than once gotten into situations while drinking that could be dangerous, such as driving, having unsafe sex, using machinery, walking in an unsafe neighborhood; or had a memory blackout?
  •  Kept drinking even though it was making you depressed or anxious, or adding to other health problems?
  •  Found that when the effects of alcohol were wearing off, you had withdrawal symptoms, such as trouble sleeping, shakiness, irritability, anxiety, depression, restlessness, nausea, or sweating?

In addition to peer-led support models such as Alcoholics Anonymous, there are many options for professionally-led treatment. Treatment for AUD often involves a combination of talk therapy and medication. Therapy can be for individuals, groups, or families, under the direction of a licensed counselor trained in substance use disorders. Medication to help individuals stop drinking and avoid relapse can be administered under the care of a licensed primary care provider or a board-certified addiction medicine physician. In addition, different levels of care and care settings are available to meet the needs of each situation, including outpatient, partial hospitalization, residential, or intensive inpatient.

Although the consequences of AUD can be devastating, hope for recovery is possible with evidence-based, timely intervention.

Reference: White, A. M., Castle, I. J. P., Hingson, R. W., & Powell, P. A. (2020). Using Death Certificates to Explore Changes in Alcohol‐Related Mortality in the United States, 1999 to 2017. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.

The Bizzell Group (Bizzell) was founded by CEO Anton Bizzell, M.D., a substance use disorders expert and former Medical Officer at NIAAA. Our recent work includes systematic, integrated approaches designed to effect lasting change in the field of substance use disorders through projects with the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation (USCCF). Learn more about how Bizzell advances data-driven, research-informed, innovative solutions to solve complex, real-world challenges. www.thebizzellgroup.com