Psychiatric disorders in a sample of repeat impaired-driving offenders

J Stud Alcohol. 2006 Sep;67(5):707-13. doi: 10.15288/jsa.2006.67.707.


Objective: This study was conducted to assess alcohol- and drug-use disorders and other psychiatric disorders in a sample of repeat driving under the influence (DUI) offenders.

Method: We interviewed offenders to estimate lifetime and 12-month prevalence of psychiatric disorders as designated by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (alcohol and drug abuse and dependence, major depressive or dysthymic disorder, bipolar disorder, post- traumatic stress disorder [PTSD], and obsessive-compulsive disorder). The offenders interviewed (385 men, 74 women) were those who had been adjudicated in the Multnomah County, OR, Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants Intensive Supervision Program. Psychiatric diagnoses were assessed using the Composite International Diagnostic Interview.

Results: The majority of respondents (53.8%) were alcohol dependent. Sixty-five percent of men and 79.7% of women had at least one lifetime disorder comorbid with alcohol abuse or dependence. The most prevalent lifetime non-substance-use disorder was major depressive or dysthymic disorder (30.9%) followed by PTSD (15.3%). Approximately 40% of subjects reported meeting criteria for lifetime nonalcohol drug abuse for at least one drug type, and 30% were drug dependent for at least one drug type; overall, 54% of all offenders had drug abuse or dependence disorders.

Conclusions: Assessment and treatment services for repeat alcohol-impaired driving offenders should be sufficiently comprehensive to provide care for drug-use disorders and other psychiatric problems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Automobile Driving / statistics & numerical data*
  • Demography
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Mental Disorders / psychology
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology*