Detection of alcohol and drug problems in an urban gynecology clinic

Anne E. Gupman, Dace Svikis, Mary E. McCaul, Jean Anderson, Patricia B. Santora

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To compare screening instruments for their utility to detect substance use problems in women seeking gynecologic care, to assess the likelihood that alcohol/drug problems will be detected by physicians during a routine office visit and to examine the relationship between regular alcohol and/or drug use and the patient's presenting gynecologic complaints. STUDY DESIGN: Women (N = 360) attending a hospital-based gynecology clinic were screened prior to physician visit using the Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test, CAGE and T-ACE. After the visit, information on presenting complaint and physician's documentation of the patient's tobacco, alcohol and other drug use was abstracted from the medical record. RESULTS: The rates of alcohol and illicit drug use varied across assessment instruments; physician documentation, however, yielded the lowest prevalence estimates. Regular alcohol and drug users were more likely to present with chronic and acute medical problems than patients who were not regular users of these substances. CONCLUSION: The gynecology clinic offers an opportunity for early identification of women with substance problems, and alternative strategies are needed to encourage gynecologists to routinely screen for such problems at each medical visit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)404-410
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Reproductive Medicine for the Obstetrician and Gynecologist
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jun 4 2002


  • Alcohol abuse
  • Drug abuse
  • Urban population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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