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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Alcohol Use Disorders: The NICE Guideline on the Diagnosis, Assessment and Management of Harmful Drinking and Alcohol Dependence

National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (NCCMH)

Price: £45.00

College members' price: £40.50

Published: Jul 2011

Format: Paperback + free CD-ROM

Number of pages: 610

ISBN: 9781904671268

Alcohol Use Disorders: The NICE Guideline on the Diagnosis, Assessment and Management of Harmful Drinking and Alcohol Dependence

Harmful drinking leads to 2.5 million deaths annually and alcohol is the third leading risk factor globally for burden of illness. Alcohol-use disorders are an increasing problem in children and young people. Physical and psychiatric comorbidities add to the considerable burden that alcohol-use disorders can pose to the individual and to society.  This guideline enables healthcare professionals to recognise and manage these prevalent problems in adults and in young people aged 10 to 17 years, and offer effective treatments to their patients.

The guideline reviews the evidence for the diagnosis and assessment of alcohol-use disorders, organisation and delivery of care, settings for assisted alcohol withdrawal, psychological interventions, and pharmacological interventions for assisted withdrawal and relapse prevention. It also includes health economic modelling of pharmacological interventions as an adjunctive treatment for the prevention of relapse and a chapter on the experience of care.

Readership: Primarily specialist alcohol services. Though the guideline will also be useful for all staff working in healthcare services; plus academics and researchers.

List of the other NICE mental health guidelines

NICE Mental Health Guidelines

These guidelines from NICE set out clear recommendations, based on the best available evidence, for health care professionals on how to work with and implement physical, psychological and service-level interventions for people with various mental health conditions.

The book contains the full guidelines that cannot be obtained in print anywhere else. It brings together all of the evidence that led to the recommendations made, detailed explanations of the methodology behind their preparation, plus an overview of the condition covering detection, diagnosis and assessment, and the full range of treatment and care approaches.

The accompanying free CD-ROM contains all the data used as evidence, including:

  • Included and excluded studies.
  • Profile tables that summarise both the quality of the evidence and the results of the evidence synthesis.
  • All meta-analytical data, presented as forest plots.
  • Detailed information about how to use and interpret forest plots.


  1. Preface
  2. Alcohol dependence and harmful alcohol use
  3. Methods used to develop this guideline
  4. Experience of care
  5. Organisation and delivery of care
  6. Psychological and psychosocial interventions
  7. Pharmacological interventions
  8. Summary of recommendations
  9. Appendices
  10. References
  11. Abbreviations

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