Functioning of alcohol use disorder criteria among men and women with arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol

Vivia V. McCutcheon, Arpana Agrawal, Andrew C. Heath, Howard Edenberg, Victor M. Hesselbrock, Marc A. Schuckit, John R. Kramer, Kathleen K. Bucholz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Many states require screening of individuals arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol to determine recidivism risk and the need for treatment based on severity of alcohol problems. Several screening instruments use DSM-IV criteria for alcohol abuse and dependence to assess alcohol problems in this population, but whether they adequately measure alcohol problems in individuals with DUIs has not been examined. In addition, gender differences in DUI samples suggest that female offenders have more severe alcohol problems than male offenders. The current study examines differences in alcohol criteria functioning by DUI history and gender using an item response theory (IRT) approach. Methods: Data from diagnostic interviews with 8,605 participants in the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism, including 1,655 who ever reported a DUI arrest (20% women), were used to examine differences in alcohol criteria functioning between men and women with and without DUIs. The factor underlying item response was conceptualized as unidimensional, representing alcohol problem severity. Results: Social/interpersonal problems, larger/longer, and inability/persistent desire to quit displayed greater discrimination of IRT-defined alcohol problem severity among individuals with DUIs than those without. Irrespective of DUI status, women had a higher threshold than men for time spent drinking or recovering. Women without DUIs had a higher threshold than similar men for social/interpersonal problems. Taken as a whole, the criteria yielded similar amounts of information in all groups. Conclusions: DSM-IV criteria for alcohol abuse and dependence adequately detect alcohol problem severity in individuals with DUIs, and some are better at detecting severity in this particularly high-risk group than in individuals without DUIs. However, the criteria as a whole are equally effective in measuring alcohol problem severity among individuals with and without DUIs and may be used with confidence in screening DUI offenders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1985-1993
Number of pages9
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Volume35
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2011

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Alcohols
Alcoholism
Social Problems
Screening
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
Driving Under the Influence
Women's Rights
Drinking
Interviews
Population

Keywords

  • Alcohol use disorder
  • Driving under the influence
  • Item response theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Toxicology

Cite this

Functioning of alcohol use disorder criteria among men and women with arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol. / McCutcheon, Vivia V.; Agrawal, Arpana; Heath, Andrew C.; Edenberg, Howard; Hesselbrock, Victor M.; Schuckit, Marc A.; Kramer, John R.; Bucholz, Kathleen K.

In: Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, Vol. 35, No. 11, 11.2011, p. 1985-1993.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

McCutcheon, Vivia V. ; Agrawal, Arpana ; Heath, Andrew C. ; Edenberg, Howard ; Hesselbrock, Victor M. ; Schuckit, Marc A. ; Kramer, John R. ; Bucholz, Kathleen K. / Functioning of alcohol use disorder criteria among men and women with arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol. In: Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 2011 ; Vol. 35, No. 11. pp. 1985-1993.
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AB - Background: Many states require screening of individuals arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol to determine recidivism risk and the need for treatment based on severity of alcohol problems. Several screening instruments use DSM-IV criteria for alcohol abuse and dependence to assess alcohol problems in this population, but whether they adequately measure alcohol problems in individuals with DUIs has not been examined. In addition, gender differences in DUI samples suggest that female offenders have more severe alcohol problems than male offenders. The current study examines differences in alcohol criteria functioning by DUI history and gender using an item response theory (IRT) approach. Methods: Data from diagnostic interviews with 8,605 participants in the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism, including 1,655 who ever reported a DUI arrest (20% women), were used to examine differences in alcohol criteria functioning between men and women with and without DUIs. The factor underlying item response was conceptualized as unidimensional, representing alcohol problem severity. Results: Social/interpersonal problems, larger/longer, and inability/persistent desire to quit displayed greater discrimination of IRT-defined alcohol problem severity among individuals with DUIs than those without. Irrespective of DUI status, women had a higher threshold than men for time spent drinking or recovering. Women without DUIs had a higher threshold than similar men for social/interpersonal problems. Taken as a whole, the criteria yielded similar amounts of information in all groups. Conclusions: DSM-IV criteria for alcohol abuse and dependence adequately detect alcohol problem severity in individuals with DUIs, and some are better at detecting severity in this particularly high-risk group than in individuals without DUIs. However, the criteria as a whole are equally effective in measuring alcohol problem severity among individuals with and without DUIs and may be used with confidence in screening DUI offenders.

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