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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Effectiveness of Psychosocial Modalities in the Treatment of Alcohol Problems in Adults: A Review of the Evidence

Our objectives were to review the effectiveness of psychosocial modalities in the treatment of alcohol use disorders and problems, and to examine the impact of therapists on treatment outcome, the evidence on best practices for comorbid conditions, and the evidence on treatment matching.

We based our review on published systematic reviews of this topic after 2000. There is strong evidence that some, but not all, psychosocial treatments are effective in treating alcohol problems. Those with the strongest empirical support are motivational enhancement therapy, various cognitive-behavioural interventions, and brief interventions. Meta-analyses for several of these modalities suggest typical effect sizes in the low-to-moderate range.

When these modalities have been compared with one another in well-designed clinical trials, they have been shown to be of comparable effectiveness.

There is little basis on which to recommend one of these modalities over another but good reason to select from among them.

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