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Przeglad lekarski

[The patient with an alcohol abuse problem family doctor practice].


PMID 23243928

Abstract

Doctors of many specialties, including the family doctors, encounter the problems of alcohol abuse in their patients. Due to the fact that many symptoms of dangerous diseases can be masked by the fact of alcoholism, a brief doctor's visit has to be conducted with watchfulness, caution and care. Family doctors have some brief testes (such as CAGE test, AUDIT test), besides of precise anamnesis and blood chemistry, which make it easier to identify a patient with an alcohol problem. People with disabilities are more exposed to alcohol abuse since they often experience additional factors such as unemployment, social isolation and homelessness. All of the above factors foster the more frequent alcohol usage. In Poland the main treatment method of alcohol addiction is psychotherapy practiced in the rehab centers. The detoxification treatment is voluntary and free of charge even though the patients checking into those facilities are doing it against their will. They are forced to do so by entourage, family, spouse or risk of unemployment. Acamprozate is considered as a drug, run to extend abstaining from alcohol. In the past, therapy with disulfiram substance was common, but now, it is considered as unethical behaviour. In practice of medicine, a patient with alcohol addiction creates not onlya medical but also legal problems. Therefore keeping of detailed medical documentation is very important as it may become significant evidence in the future.

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