Alcohol and Psychiatric Comorbidity

  • Jack R. Cornelius
  • Oscar Bukstein
  • Ihsan Salloum
  • Duncan Clark
Part of the Recent Developments in Alcoholism book series (RDIA, volume 16)


Comorbid psychiatric disorders and drug use disorders (DUDs) are common among alcoholics (Regier, Farmer, Rae, Locke, Keith, Judd, & Goodwin, 1990; Kessler, McGonagle, Zhao, Nelson, Hughes, Eshleman, Wittchen, & Kendler, 1994). These comorbid disorders often predict a shorter time to relapse of alcoholism (Greenfield, Weiss, Muenz, Vagge, Kelly, Bello, & Michael, 1998). However, despite the prevalence and the adverse effects of this comorbidity, few controlled treatment studies have been conducted involving this dual diagnosis population (Litten & Allen, 1999). To date, most of these few studies of alcoholics with comorbid disorders have been restricted to studies of alcoholics with either comorbid major depression or comorbid anxiety disorders (Litten & Allen, 1995). The results of these trials suggest efficacy for SSRI antidepressants and tricyclic antidepressants for treating alcoholics with comorbid major depression and suggest efficacy for buspirone for treating alcoholics with comorbid anxiety disorders (Mason, Kocsis, Ritvo, & Cutler, 1996; Cornelius, Salloum, Ehler, Jarrett, Cornelius, Perel, Thase, & Black, 1997; Kranzler, Burleson, Del Boca, Babor, Korner, Brown, & Bohn, 1994). However, controlled treatment studies involving alcoholics with other comorbid disorders are almost totally lacking. Consequently, to date, no empirically proven treatment exists for most of these comorbid disorders.


Major Depression Alcohol Dependence Comorbid Disorder National Comorbidity Survey Comorbid Anxiety Disorder 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jack R. Cornelius
    • 1
  • Oscar Bukstein
    • 1
  • Ihsan Salloum
    • 1
  • Duncan Clark
    • 1
  1. 1.Pittsburgh Adolescent Alcohol Research Center, Center for Education and Drug Abuse ResearchUniversity of PittsburghPittsburgh

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