[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
September 4, 1987

Alcohol Abuse in Medical School-Reply

Author Affiliations

Rush-Presbyterian—St Luke's Medical Center Chicago

Rush-Presbyterian—St Luke's Medical Center Chicago

JAMA. 1987;258(9):1173. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03400090057018

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


In Reply.—  Clinical research findings that contradict our immediate experience or our strong beliefs are not ipso facto wrong or "worthless." This point of view is clearly antiscientific.We will be the first to acknowledge the limitations inherent in our sampling, our study design, our psychometric analyses, and our generalizations about the findings. Yet we also want to emphasize that the self-report questionnaire we administered to make research diagnoses of alcohol abuse was based on a well-developed and well-studied National Institute of Mental Health epidemiologic instrument (the Diagnostic Interview Schedule). The presence of any two or more of the following symptoms constituted a research diagnosis of alcohol abuse: the sense that one drinks too much, family members or friends objecting to one's drinking pattern, inability to stop drinking, frequent drinking before breakfast, school or job difficulties due to drinking, a separation or divorce due to drinking, periods of 72 or