Quality of Life Research

, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 255–261 | Cite as

Quality of Life in alcohol-dependent subjects – a review

  • J.H. Foster
  • J.E. Powell
  • E.J. Marshall
  • T.J. Peters


Although alcohol misuse is a major cause of morbidity and mortality and an important health care burden, the Quality of Life (QoL) of alcohol misusing subjects has been little studied to date. For example, only 5 out of 442 accepted abstracts at a recent international QoL conference concerned alcohol-dependent subjects. This paper reviews the ongoing and published work in the area focusing upon QoL characteristics of alcohol-dependent subjects, the link between QoL comorbidity and alcoholism, QoL alcohol dependency and social environment, changes in QoL status as a result of abstinence, minimal or controlled drinking, QoL as a predictor of relapse to heavy drinking and the importance of using a QoL measure when assessing treatment outcomes together with some of the present difficulties with existing measures. The main conclusions from the review were that the QoL of alcohol-dependent subjects is very poor but improved as a result of abstinence, controlled or minimal drinking. The important factors in the QoL of alcohol-dependent subjects are psychiatric comorbidity, social environment and disturbed sleep.

Alcohol Review Quality of Life Treatment outcomes 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • J.H. Foster
    • 1
  • J.E. Powell
    • 2
  • E.J. Marshall
    • 1
  • T.J. Peters
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Clinical Biochemistry and Psychological MedicineKings CollegeLondonUK
  2. 2.School of Health SciencesUniversity of WolverhamptonUK

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