Longitudinal association between social anxiety disorder and incident alcohol use disorder: results from two national samples of US adults

Abstract

This study assessed the association between subclinical social fears and a 12-month diagnosis of Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) at baseline and the risk of incident Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) at follow-up, compared to those without subclinical social fears and a 12-month diagnosis of SAD. We performed an individual participant meta-analysis based on data from two national longitudinal surveys. Wave 1 of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) was conducted in 2001–2002 in a sample of 43,093 adults and Wave 2 was conducted in 2004–2005 in 34,653 of the original respondents. Wave 1 of the National Comorbidity Survey was conducted in 1990–1992 in a sample of 8098 respondents and Wave 2 was conducted in 2001–2002 in 5001 of the original respondents. Binary logistic regression analyses were performed independently in each study and then the effect estimates were combined using random-effects meta-analysis. Neither subclinical social fears nor 12-month SAD at baseline were associated with incident AUD at follow-up. These findings conflict with reports of previous studies that a diagnosis of SAD is a risk factor for AUD in adults, and suggest that subclinical social fears are not associated with differential risk of incident AUD.

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Funding

BM received funding from the Johns Hopkins Epidemiology and Biostatistics of Aging Training Program of the National Institute on Aging (NIA) under award number T32AG000247.

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Correspondence to Beyon Miloyan.

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Miloyan, B., Van Doorn, G. Longitudinal association between social anxiety disorder and incident alcohol use disorder: results from two national samples of US adults. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol 54, 469–475 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00127-018-1569-z

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Keywords

  • Social phobia
  • Alcoholism
  • Incidence
  • Prospective cohort study
  • Epidemiology