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The prevalence of alcoholism

The prevalence of alcoholism in different countries of the world
The data of consumption of alcohol per capita in various countries, as we noted above, only indirectly allow to judge about the prevalence of alcohol abuse. A more concrete idea of the size of this phenomenon gives the incidence of alcoholism. It should be noted that the prevalence of alcoholism is one of the most difficult tasks of medical statistics, psychiatry and social hygiene. The difficulty lies primarily in the methodological difficulties and the lack of reliable methods.
In accordance with the International classification of diseases, injuries and causes of death (eighth review) alcoholism belongs to the class of "mental disorder" and includes the following sections:
291. Alcoholic psychosis
291.0 delirium tremens
291.1 Psychosis Korsakov (alcoholic)
291.2 Other alcoholic hallucinosis
291.3 Alcohol paranoia
291.9 Other and unspecified alcoholic psychoses
303. Alcoholism
303.0 Episodic alcohol abuse
303.1 Permanent alcohol abuse
303.2 Alcohol addiction
303.9 Other and unspecified symptoms of alcoholism
To alcoholism as a disease, except alcoholic psychosis, alcohol is drug addiction (303.2)with specific symptoms disease. Other out (303.0, 303.1, 303.9) indicate a history of alcohol abuse, which still is not a reason to put a medical diagnosis of alcoholism.
Given the imperfection of the classification, many authors in different countries still hold their own classifications, that considerably complicates the comparison of results of researches in different countries. Currently, introduced by the international classification of diseases, injuries and causes of death (ninth revision) * which offers all the States, resulting from the use of alcohol and characterized by a kind of mental and somatic disorders, behavioral and other reactions, the presence of alcohol syndrome, refer to section 303 of Chronic alcoholism. Cases of acute intoxication and state "booze", i.e., binge drinking, or excessive alcohol consumption, included in the category 305 "Misuse of drugs without the effects of dependency" (sub-category 305.0 - alcohol abuse). Pathological intoxication caused by relatively small doses of alcohol, without evident neurological signs of intoxication is considered as a specific individual reaction to alcohol. It refers to the alcoholic psychoses (291.4).
Refinements made to the classification of diseases, differentiate alcohol abuse cases with symptoms of alcohol dependence (patients with an alcoholism) and without (drunkenness), which corresponds to our point of view. The transition to this classification will facilitate a unified approach to the study of the prevalence of alcohol abuse (alcohol abuse and alcoholism).
In the absence of state registration and accounting of alcoholism foreign psychiatrists often have to determine the prevalence of alcoholism among the population according to hospital statistics, mortality of patients with alcohol, the results of sample surveys, and consumption of alcoholic beverages per capita and financial expenses for their manufacture [Kachaev A. K., Urakov, I., 1975].

* Manual of the International statistical classification of diseases, injuries and causes of death.- Geneva: who, 1980.