College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Title

Some Sobering Data on the Use of Self-Confrontation with Alcoholics

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1971

Publication Title

Behavior Therapy

ISSN

0005-7894

Volume

2

Issue/No.

1

Abstract

Fifty-two hospitalized male alcoholics were given long (30 min), short (5 min), or no videotape playback of drunken comportment during several alcoholic drinking sessions, or were given standard hospital treatment. Behavioral parameters of drinking such as magnitude of sip, intersip time, and amount consumed were obtained during experimentation for the experimental subjects as well as for the controls, who drank but received no video playback. A weekly follow-up of 6 weeks was conducted on all patients to ascertain whether they were sober, drunk, socially drinking, or incarcerated.

The only measure by which the groups differed from one another as a result of experimental procedures was the proportion of subjects completing the drinking sessions with subsequent video confrontation, which was significantly smaller than that of the controls who drank but received no playback. There was a statistically nonsignificant tendency for alcoholics who were given video playback without supportive therapy to return to heavy drinking after hospitalization earlier than alcoholics who were not given video playback. This finding may be interpreted as possibly indicative of the severely stressful effects of video playback of drunken comportment, at least on some individuals, reported by other investigators in this field.

DOI

10.1016/S0005-7894(71)80143-0