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College Students’ Drinking Patterns: Trajectories of AUDIT Scores during the First Four Years at University

Johnsson K.O.a · Leifman A.b · Berglund M.a
aClinical Alcohol Research, Lund University, Malmö University Hospital, Malmö, and bDivision of Clinical Alcohol and Drug Addiction, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden Eur Addict Res 2008;14:11–18 (DOI:10.1159/000110406)


Aims: Changes in AUDIT score trajectories were examined in a student population during their first 4 years at a university, including high-risk consumers and a subsample of low-risk consumers. Method: 359 students were selected for the present study, comprising all high-risk consumers (the 27% with highest scores, i.e. 11 for males and 7 for females) and a randomized sample of low-risk consumers (n = 177 and 182, respectively). The Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT) was used as screening instrument. Trajectory analyses were made using a semiparametric group-based model. Results: In the low-AUDIT group, five distinct trajectories were identified: three stable non-risky consumption groups (83%) and two increasing groups (17%; from non-risky to risky). In the high-AUDIT group, three groups were identified: two stable high groups (58%) and one decreasing group (from risky to non-risky consumption; 41%). In the integrated model, stable risky consumption comprised 16% of the total sample, decreasing consumption 11%, increasing consumption comprised 13% and stable non-risky consumption 60% of the sample. Gender influenced the trajectories. Conclusion: The pattern of changes in risk consumption is similar to that found in corresponding US studies.


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