Relationship of negative emotionality, NIAAA recovery, and 3- and 6-month drinking outcomes among adults in treatment for alcohol use disorder

B. K. Linn, J. Zhao, P. R. Stasiewicz, C. LaBarre, G. E. Wilding, C. M. Bradizza

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Background: The National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) recently released a new definition of recovery from alcohol use disorder (AUD). A patient is considered recovered if they are remitted from DSM-5 AUD and report cessation of heavy drinking. The NIAAA has also recently proposed the Addictions Neuroclinical Assessment (ANA) to guide treatment research. Negative emotionality is one of three domains of the ANA and theory proposes that AUD is maintained by negative reinforcement via the relief of negative affect. The purpose of the current study was to examine: (1) the relationship of end-of-treatment negative emotionality and NIAAA recovery, and (2) the ability of NIAAA recovery at the end of treatment to predict three- and six-month drinking outcomes. Method: At baseline and end-of-treatment, women and men (n = 181) in treatment for AUD completed measures of negative emotionality, drinking, and were assessed for DSM-5 AUD diagnostic criteria. At three- and six-months post-treatment, drinking was re-assessed. Results: 22.5% (n = 24) of participants met full criteria for NIAAA recovery at end-of-treatment. Lower levels of end of treatment negative emotionality were associated with increased odds of achieving NIAAA recovery. Meeting NIAAA recovery predicted greater percent days abstinent (PDA) and lower percent heavy drinking days (PHDD) at 3-months, but not at 6-months post-treatment. Conclusions: This study is among the first to report a relationship between the negative emotionality domain of the ANA and NIAAA recovery. Results underscore the importance of addressing negative emotionality in treatment. Findings also suggest that NIAAA recovery predicts positive short term drinking outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number109695
JournalDrug and alcohol dependence
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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