Sample: Approximately how many alcohol-related deaths were recorded between 1999-2017 among people aged ≥16 years?
In the last 2 decades, alcohol intake and alcohol-related harm in the US has substantially increased. Approximately 70% of adults aged ≥18 years consumed alcohol in 2017 alone and between 2006-2014, rates of alcohol-related emergency department visits rose 47.3% among persons aged ≥12 years. Few patients report being asked about their alcohol use by their physicians, however, which is particularly concerning for older patients who may be taking medications that negatively interact with alcohol. To determine if alcohol-related mortality has also increased, researchers at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism analyzed data from all US death certificates filed from 1999-2017 among persons aged ≥16 years. The study was published online on January 7, 2020, in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.
The results highlight the need for physician-patient discussions surrounding alcohol use. Find out more in the quick quiz below.
Question 1. Approximately how many alcohol-related deaths were recorded between 1999-2017 among people aged ≥16 years?
Answer: D. >940 000. Between 1999 and 2017, 944 880 alcohol-related deaths were recorded in the US among people aged ≥16 years.
Question 2. Between 1999-2017, the number of alcohol-related deaths among people aged ≥16 years increased by approximately how much?
Answer: D. >75%. The number of alcohol-related deaths among US persons aged ≥16 years nearly doubled, going from 35 914 in 1999 to 72 558 in 2017. Similarly, the overall age-adjusted death rate increased 50.9% from 16.9 per 100 000 deaths in 1999 to 25.5 per 100 000 deaths in 2017.
Question 3. True or false? Alcohol-related deaths accounted for approximately 3% of 2.4 million deaths among persons aged ≥16 years in 1999 and 4% of 2.8 million deaths in 2017.
Answer: B. False. Alcohol-related deaths accounted for approximately 1.5% of 2.4 million deaths among persons aged ≥16 years in 1999 and 2.6% of 2.8 million deaths in 2017.
Question 4. True or false? Between 1999 and 2017, the largest annual increase in alcohol-related deaths occurred among women.
Answer: A. True. Despite men accounting for the majority (76.4%) of alcohol-related deaths between 1999-2017, a greater increase in the number and age-adjusted rate of alcohol-related deaths was seen in women (135.8% in numbers, 85.3% in age-adjusted rates) vs men (92.9% in numbers, 38.7% in age-adjusted rates).
Question 5. In which age group of adults was the average annual percent change in alcohol-related deaths highest?
Answer: C. 25-34 years. The average annual percent change in alcohol-related deaths between 1999 and 2017 was highest among men (4.1%) and women (5.9%) aged 25-34 years. Researchers also noted that despite the higher increase in alcohol-related deaths in this age group, the overall rates of alcohol-related deaths were >4 times higher among middle-aged and older adults aged 45-74 years vs among those aged 25-34 years.
Question 6. Adults aged ≥16 years in which of the above racial/ethnic groups had the highest alcohol-related death rate in 2017?
Answer: A. NH AIAN. NH AIAN aged ≥16 years had the highest alcohol-related death rate in 2017 (women: 63.4, men: 141.2 per 100 000 deaths). NH API had the lowest alcohol-related death rate (women: 1.7, men: 9.7 per 100 000 deaths) in 2017.
Question 7. True or false? The majority of alcohol-related deaths in 1999 AND 2017 were due to acute causes.
Answer: B. False. Chronic causes (eg, alcoholic liver disease, alcoholic gastritis) were reported for the majority of alcohol-related deaths in 1999 (86.5%) and in 2017 (86.3%) vs acute causes (toxic effects of alcohol, poisoning by and exposure to alcohol) that accounted for 14.6% of alcohol-related deaths in 1999 and 21.5% in 2017. The largest increase in alcohol-related death due to chronic causes was observed in adults aged 25-34 years.
Question 8. In 2017, the largest percentage of alcohol-related deaths among people aged ≥16 years resulted from which of the above underlying causes?