Screening patients in busy hospital-based HIV care centers for hazardous and harmful drinking patterns: The identification of an optimal screening tool

Shiela M. Strauss, David M. Rindskopf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Because many HIV care providers fail to detect patients' hazardous drinking, we examined the potential use of the AUDIT-C, the first 3 of the 10 items comprising the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT), to efficiently screen patients for alcohol abuse. To perform this examination, we used Item Response Theory (IRT) involving individual AUDIT items and AUDIT instruments completed by patients (N = 400) at a Designated AIDS Center (DAC) in New York City. At various AUDIT-C cutoff scores, specificities and sensitivities were then examined using the AUDIT as a "gold standard." For cutoff scores on the AUDIT from 4 to 8, cutoff scores on the AUDIT-C of 3 and 4, respectively, resulted in sensitivities between.94-.98 and.81-.89, respectively, and specificities between.82-.91 and.91-1.0, respectively. In busy HIV care centers, the AUDIT-C with cutoff scores of 3 or 4 is a reasonable alternative to the full AUDIT as an alcohol screening instrument.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)347-353
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the International Association of Physicians in AIDS Care
Volume8
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2009

Keywords

  • HIV
  • alcohol-related disorders
  • screening
  • sensitivity and specificity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases

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