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Washington Post: Having just one drink doubles your risk of getting injured

"Patients were asked about the cause of injury bringing them to the emergency department (categorized as falls, traffic, violence, other), drinking within six hours prior to the injury event, and drinking during the same six-hour period the previous week," author Cheryl Cherpitel and her four co-authors explain. Cherpitel is a researcher Alcohol Research Group, a program of the Public Health Institute.

Cheryl Cherpitel, from PHI’s Alcohol Research Group, had her study covered in the Washington Post:

“You don’t need a scientist to tell you that if you go out and get really, really drunk, there’s a good chance that you’ll do something stupid and hurt yourself. But exactly what are those chances? How drunk do you have to be to, say, quadruple your risk of injury? Do you put yourself at more risk of certain injury types than others? And is the relationship between drunkenness and injury risk different for some people than others?

“To answer those questions you do need science, and lucky for us, science recently discovered the answers! For a forthcoming article in the journal Addiction, researchers analyzed surveys filled out by 13,000 people — hailing from 18 countries — who found themselves drunk and in the emergency room for injury. The research was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

“In what should come as a shock to nobody, the more you drink, the more likely you are to hurt yourself. A person who has consumed 3 drinks in the past six hours is about 4.6 times as likely to end up in the E.R. as someone who hasn’t drunk at all. Even a single drink roughly doubles your odds of going to the hospital.

” ‘Patients were asked about the cause of injury bringing them to the emergency department (categorized as falls, traffic, violence, other), drinking within six hours prior to the injury event, and drinking during the same six-hour period the previous week,’ ” author Cheryl Cherpitel and her four co-authors explain. Cherpitel is a researcher Alcohol Research Group, a program of the Public Health Institute.

Read the full story.

Originally published by The Washington Post


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