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Alcohol Misuse and Kidney Injury: Epidemiological Evidence and Potential Mechanisms

Chronic alcohol consumption is a well-known risk factor for tissue injury. The link between alcohol use disorder (AUD) and kidney injury is intriguing but controversial, and the molecular mechanisms by which alcohol may damage the kidneys are poorly understood. Epidemiological studies attempting to link AUD and kidney disease are, to date, inconclusive, and there is little experimental evidence...

Recovery From AUD - From the Editors

In recent decades, the term “recovery” as it pertains to alcohol use disorder (AUD) and drug use disorders has taken on increasing cultural and scientific significance in the United States and around the world. Its growing prominence as a culturally recognized and, importantly, positively valenced organizing concept has occurred in large part in direct response to help counter the pervasive and...

AUD Risk, Diagnoses, and Course in a Prospective Study Across Two Generations: Implications for Prevention

Introduction

A large proportion of the population consume alcoholic beverages at some time in their lives. For most people, alcohol consumption is low to moderate and is not associated with harmful physiological, psychological, or social outcomes. However, for a substantial number of individuals, alcohol consumption increases over time; leads to the development of tolerance and alcohol-related...

Alcohol Use Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury

Alcohol use and traumatic brain injury (TBI) are inextricably and bidirectionally linked. Alcohol intoxication is one of the strongest predictors of TBI, and a substantial proportion of TBIs occur in intoxicated individuals. An inverse relationship is also emerging, such that TBI can serve as a risk factor for, or modulate the course of, alcohol use disorder (AUD). Critically, alcohol use after...

The Epidemiology of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Alcohol Use Disorder

For more than 40 years, research has shown that individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) use alcohol and experience alcohol use disorder (AUD) to a greater degree than those with no PTSD. AUD and PTSD have shown a durable comorbidity that has extended through decades and through changes in disorder definitions. Some research shows that veterans who have experienced PTSD have a high...

Alcohol, Opioids, and Pain - From the Editors

Opioids and alcohol are both effective analgesics under certain pain conditions. However, although the analgesic or pain-relieving properties of opioids are well known, information about the use of alcohol and its potential for misuse in the context of pain management has begun to emerge more recently. Alcohol doses required to alleviate pain are commensurate with binge drinking,1 defined as...

Co-Occurring Alcohol Use Disorder and Anxiety: Bridging the Psychiatric, Psychological, and Neurobiological Perspectives

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

—George Santayana

Few observations in psychiatry have been documented as long and as consistently as the association between anxiety (and general negative affect) and the chronic misuse of alcohol. Research has shown that up to 50% of individuals receiving treatment for problematic alcohol use also met diagnostic criteria...

Alcohol Use Disorder: The Role of Medication in Recovery

Introduction

It is estimated that nearly 14.6 million Americans currently meet the diagnostic criteria for alcohol use disorder (AUD)1 included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5),2 and approximately 88,000 die from alcohol-related causes in the United States each year.3 An older term, “alcohol dependence,” is equivalent to the DSM-5 criteria for...

Women and Alcohol - From the Editors

Recent epidemiological research has identified alarming trends in drinking patterns of girls and women in the United States. In recent years, the amount and frequency of alcohol use are increasing in White and Hispanic girls and young women in contrast to decreasing patterns of heavy alcohol use in boys and young men.1,2 Similarly, current and binge alcohol use is rising among older women,3,4 resu...