nei THIS MONTH IN
PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY
Alcohol Consumption May Also Carry Risks To The Brain
April 1, 2022   

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Heavy alcohol consumption has been known to be associated with neuronal loss, brain atrophy and poorer white matter fiber integrity. However, there has been conflicting evidence about whether this relationship holds for light-moderate alcohol consumption. In a recent study, conducted by Daviet and colleagues, associations between alcohol intake and brain macrostructure and microstructure were examined using multimodal imaging data from 36,678 healthy middle-aged and older adults from the UK Biobank. The results demonstrated that alcohol intake was negatively correlated with global brain volume measures, white matter microstructure, and regional gray matter volumes. In individuals who consumed as little as one-two daily units of alcohol, negative associations were observed between alcohol intake and brain macrostructure and microstructure, and this relationship became stronger as alcohol intake increased. The study highlights the potential for even moderate drinking to be associated with brain volume alterations in middle-aged and older adults.

Reference: Daviet et al. Nature Communications 2022;13:1175. Abstract

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April is Alcohol Awareness Month and is meant to spread awareness and education about alcohol dependence and alcohol use disorder (AUD). Alcohol is the most used and abused substance in the United States by far. Below are educational resources on how to manage patients with alcohol use disorder:

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Encore Presentation
My Cup Runneth Over: Identifying and Treating Alcohol Use Disorder
CME/CE Credit: 1.0 | Expires: November 8, 2023

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Encore Presentation
Rising Above: Advancements in the Management of Substance Use Disorders
CME/CE Credit: 0.75 | Expires: June 26, 2024

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Case Studies
47-Year-Old Man with Bipolar II Disorder and Alcohol Use Disorder
CME/CE credits: 0.5 | Expires: August 17, 2024

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Patient Education
Diaries: Alcohol Diary

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Teaching Slides
Substance Use: Alcohol Use Disorder