Assessing the impact of computerised and written advice in changing the habit and behaviour of alcohol use in patients who have suffered alcohol-related facial injuries—a pilot study

  • Kai LeeEmail author
  • Hao-Hsuan Tsai
  • Jiandong Sun
  • Arun Chandu
Original Article



Alcohol screening and a brief intervention (SBI) can be effective in changing harmful drinking behaviour and reducing the chance of future alcohol-related traumas. However, there is no standardised method in its application. This study aims to deliver a novel method of SBI to patients with alcohol-related facial fractures and to assess changes in their alcohol intake and attitudes to drinking following this intervention.


Twenty consecutive patients at two Victorian Hospitals were consented to undergo a novel SBI program. This study analysed the results of the initial survey and the follow-up survey completed at least 3 months later.


Of the 20 patients recruited for the initial survey, 18 returned for the follow-up (90% response rate). All patients were males, 50% were aged between 18 and 29 years, 61% involved in interpersonal violence, 56% sustained mandibular fractures and 89% underwent surgery. The alcohol risk score increased in the follow-up survey; however, the relationship is not statistically significant. A high proportion of the patients were still unaware of their risk. Patients showed greater awareness of their drinking and willingness to accept help and more readiness to accept written advice rather than computerised materials.


This study found a high rate of acceptance among trauma patients to the intervention program. Although there was no significant change in the risk scores between the initial and follow-up surveys, certain subgroup was more amenable to the intervention given. There is generally an improvement in the attitudes towards and knowledge of harmful drinking.


Alcohol Brief intervention Screening 



This study has not received any funding.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethics approval was granted by the respective Health Service Ethics Committee. Consent was obtained and appropriate patients undertook a 5–10-min guided questionnaire.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Compliance with ethical standards

This study was granted ethics approval from the Barwon Health and Western Health Low Risk Human Research Ethics Panel, Office for Research. Informed consent was obtained from all participants in this study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kai Lee
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hao-Hsuan Tsai
    • 2
  • Jiandong Sun
    • 3
  • Arun Chandu
    • 4
  1. 1.Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery UnitWestern HealthMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Oral and Maxillofacial SurgeryWestern HealthMelbourneAustralia
  3. 3.School of Public Health and Social WorkQueensland University of TechnologyKelvin GroveAustralia
  4. 4.Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery UnitWestern HealthMelbourneAustralia

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