Alcohol consumption within the context of hepatitis C: A qualitative study of non-problematic drinkers

Eleanor Palo Stoller, Andrew J. Hund, Noah J. Webster, Carol E. Blixen, Adam T. Prezynski, Richard A. McCormick, Stephanie W. Kanuch, Neal V. Dawson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    20 Citations (Scopus)


    Aims: Little is known about how non-problematic drinkers respond to advice to reduce alcohol consumption as part of disease management. In this article, we examine patient reports of drinking behaviour after being diagnosed with chronic hepatitis C, a condition for which alcohol consumption is contraindicated. Methods: In this qualitative study, we analyzed transcripts of semi-structured interviews with hepatitis C virus+ (HCV+) patients whose level of alcohol consumption would not be considered problematic in the absence of their diagnosis. Results: Most respondents reported some instances of adherence, but only half adhered to the advice to limit drinking consistently over time. Respondents who did not stop drinking often modified their behaviour by changing the type of alcohol consumed or limiting drinking to particular occasions. Conclusion: Most informants understood the risks of drinking after HCV infection, particularly in the presence of symptoms, with the onset of complications, or when undergoing treatment. But some believed they could monitor their bodies for evidence of disease progression or that drinking was acceptable during early, asymptomatic stages of infection. Our results also identified situations in which patients need support in adhering to intentions not to drink, including social pressures, stressful situations, or environmental triggers.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)546-552
    Number of pages7
    JournalAlcohol and Alcoholism
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 15 2006

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Medicine (miscellaneous)
    • Toxicology
    • Psychiatry and Mental health


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