Does child maltreatment predict alcohol use disorders in young adulthood? A cohort study of linked notifications and survey data

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Kisely, S
Mills, R
Strathearn, L
Najman, JM
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2019
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Abstract

Background and aims: Most studies of the association between child maltreatment and subsequent problem alcohol use are retrospective. We studied the association of prospectively substantiated child maltreatment with problem alcohol use in adulthood. Design: We used a prospective cohort record linkage correlational design using data from a statutory child protection agency of prospectively substantiated child maltreatment linked to a birth cohort from a major metropolitan maternity hospital. Setting: The Mater-University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy in Brisbane, Australia. Participants: Of the 3762 young people at the 21-year follow-up, 169 (4.5%) had a history of substantiated maltreatment by 16 years. This was most commonly emotional abuse (n=90). Measurements: The main outcome was heavy alcohol use at the 21-year follow-up, defined as 4+ standard drinks per day. Secondary outcomes were lifetime and 12-month diagnoses of alcohol use disorders in 3762 participants who completed the Composite International Diagnostic Interview-Auto (CIDI-Auto) version. Predictor variables were physical, sexual and emotional abuse, as well as neglect. Findings: At follow-up, 407 of the 3762 participants reported heavy alcohol use (10.8%). On adjusted analyses, participants who had experienced emotional abuse were significantly more likely to report heavy alcohol use at the time of interview (ORadj =1.86; 95%CI=1.04-3.32; p=0.037). Neglect was associated with a lifetime CIDI diagnosis of an alcohol use disorder. Other types of child maltreatment were not significantly associated with any of the outcomes. Conclusions: Prospectively identified experience of childhood emotional abuse and neglect appears to be positively associated with problem alcohol use at age 21.

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Addiction
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Biomedical and clinical sciences
Criminology
Psychology
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Substance Abuse
Psychiatry
Alcohol
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Kisely, S; Mills, R; Strathearn, L; Najman, JM, Does child maltreatment predict alcohol use disorders in young adulthood? A cohort study of linked notifications and survey data., Addiction, 2019, 115 (1), pp. 61-68
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