n African Journal of Psychiatry - Problem drinking among patients attending primary healthcare units in Kampala, Uganda : original article

Volume 12, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1994-8220



Previous studies have shown that a large a number of primary health care patients have alcohol related problems and very few are detected and treated. Few studies have been done in developing countries on this topic. This study sought to determine the prevalence and detection of alcohol related problems in a Primary Health Care setting (PHC). in Kampala Uganda. 768 consecutive PHC patients in two PHC centers in Kampala, Uganda, were screened in a two stage procedure. After being asked if they drink alcohol they were interviewed by means of the CAGE questionnaire and a quantity / frequency questionnaire. Those who scored positive on the CAGE were further diagnosed for alcohol dependence using the DSM-IV diagnostic criteria. Of all patients, 17.4% scored above cut-off on the CAGE, 28.5% had a high risk drinking pattern and 9.5% had alcohol dependence. Among drinkers, drinking beyond safe limit was more common among men. Males and those aged between 35 to 44 years, were more likely to be CAGE positive and to be diagnosed with alcohol dependence. Only 27 out of 366 drinkers were asked about alcohol by the PHC professional. Males and high risk drinkers were more likely to be asked. Prevalence of alcohol problems was high and detection rate of alcohol related problems was low in this Ugandan setting. Training of PHC professionals in diagnosing and treating alcohol related problems is required.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error