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Revista de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1518-8787Print version ISSN 0034-8910


DANTAS, Roberto Oliveira. Effect of time of alcoholism on the development of organic diseases in women treated at the University Hospital of Ribeirão Preto, S. Paulo, Brazil. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 1985, vol.19, n.4, pp.304-310. ISSN 1518-8787.

To determine the period of frequent alcoholic drink intake (mean intake of 100 ml of ethanol per day on at least three days a week) up to the onset of signs and symptoms of organic diseases caused by the habit, 95 women treated at the University Hospital of the Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto for organic diseases associated with alcoholism between 1978 and 1982, we studied. Clinical and laboratory diagnosis of cirrhosis of the liver was made in 32 patients, of chronic pancreatitis in 13, and of other diseases (pellagra, malnutrition, peripheral neuritis, and alcoholic hepatitis) in 50. Patients showing only psychiatric symptoms were excluded from the study. Patient history was obtained after a few days of treatment. On average, the age when signs and symptoms of the diseases that motivated them to seek hospital treatment began to appear was 35.30 ± 7.72 years for chronic pancreatitis patients, 36.53 ± 8.39 for patients with cirrhosis of the liver, and 33.90 ± 11.27 for the patients with other diseases. Time of alcohol intake was 15.92 ± 7.15 years for chronic pancreatitis patients, 14.62 ± 8.70 years for patients with cirrhosis of the liver, and 13.24 ± 9.58 years for patients with other diseases. A family history ol afcoholism was present in 64.2% of cases and generally involved the husband. None of the patients reported other women with problems of alcoholism in the family. The period of alcoholism before the onset of cirrhosis of the liver among the women studied (14.62 years) was shorter than that encountered for men from the same population (21.10 years), studied in previous investigations.

Keywords : Alcoholism; Women; Alcohol drinking; Liver cirrhosis, alcoholic; Pancreatitis.

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