Heavy Drinking Increases a Woman's Injury Risk More Than a Man's
Janice Neumann - Reuters Health
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November 29, 2014
Heavy drinking increases the risk of being injured, and far more so for women than men, researchers say.
In a review of emergency department admissions in 18 countries, they also found that violence was involved in twice as many drinking-related injuries as were traffic collisions, falls or other causes.
“Even small amounts of drinking put one at risk for injury,” said lead researcher Cheryl Cherpitel of the Alcohol Research Group in Emeryville, California.
After three standard drinks, both men and women were about 4.5 times more likely to be injured than when they were not drinking, the authors report in the journal Addiction.
But after that point, women’s risk started rising faster until it was double, then triple that of men. Compared to when they were not drinking, after 15 drinks men were 12 times more likely to be injured but women were 22 times more likely to be injured. The odds of injury peaked for both sexes at about 30 drinks.
A standard “drink” is typically any amount that contains 14 grams of pure alcohol. That would translate to 12 ounces of beer containing 5 percent alcohol, five ounces of wine with 12 percent alcohol or 1.5 ounces of hard liquor containing 40 percent alcohol.
The study looked at data on 13,119 injured men and women ages 18 and older who were admitted to 37 emergency departments after having up to 30 drinks in the previous six hours.
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