Socio-economic and cultural factors among patients with alcoholic liver disease at a tertiary care center in Southern India

Karthik Thamarai Kannan, Peter George


Background: Alcohol related liver diseases are common in most countries across the world. A variety of factors have been identified at the individual and community level affecting the patterns and amount of alcohol consumption. This study was done to determine such factors among patients with alcohol related liver disease.

Aim: To study the socio-economic and cultural factors among patients with alcoholic liver disease at a tertiary care center in Southern India.

Materials & methods: This observational questionnaire based study was done among patients with alcoholic liver disease, who were on regular follow up at a tertiary hospital in Mangaluru, Southern India. After a written informed consent, patients fulfilling the selection criteria were selected to the study. They were interviewed based on a preformatted proforma. The collected data were analyzed for mean, standard deviation and chi square test using SPSS-21.

Results: The subjects (n=100) studied were Kannada, Malayalam, Konkani and Tulu speaking in the age group between 18 to 60 years. In this study 43% subjects were in the age group 35-44 years and 39% of them were married. Among these 96% consumed mixed diet and only 9% did daily physical activity. The educational background found was; middle school (29%), diploma holders (26%), high school (19%), college graduates (16%), primary school (6%) and illiterates (4%). Based on occupation status, 6% were professionals, 29% farmers/shop owners, 6% skilled worker, 29% unskilled worker and 13% unemployed. We found 22% to be binge drinkers and 78% to consume alcohol daily; 15% requiring an eye-opener.

Conclusion: As seen in similar studies, the alcohol is a predominant problem in the uneducated, low earning, and stressed individuals in a society. The alcohol related health issues are global and dependent on multiple social and cultural factors. Improving the public awareness on alcohol related health issues is the key to minimize its burden in the society.


Alcoholic liver disease, social factors, cultural factors, Socio-economic status, Demography.

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