The role of demographic characteristics and readiness to change in 12-month outcome from two distinct brief interventions for impaired drivers

J Subst Abuse Treat. 2012 Jun;42(4):383-91. doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2011.09.009. Epub 2011 Nov 25.


Objectives: This study tested specific intervention responsivity to brief intervention in driving while impaired by alcohol and/or drugs recidivists based upon their demographic, substance use, and initial readiness to change characteristics.

Methods: A nonclinical community-based sample of 184 male and female recidivists was randomly assigned to receive one of two 30-minute interventions: brief motivational interviewing (n = 92) or an information-advice session (n = 92). Dependent variables were change at the 6- and 12-month follow-ups from baseline in percentage of risky drinking days and blood assay biomarkers of alcohol misuse. Independent variables were age, gender, education, past convictions for impaired driving, and baseline alcohol and drug misuse severity and readiness to change.

Results: Recidivists who were younger, male, and exhibited more negative consequences and ambivalence towards their problem drinking improved more on alcohol-related outcomes, irrespective of intervention type.

Conclusions: The results do not convincingly indicate specific intervention responsivity based upon participant characteristics but provide preliminary guidance about which recidivists are most apt to benefit from these brief approaches.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Alcoholism / diagnosis
  • Alcoholism / psychology*
  • Alcoholism / rehabilitation*
  • Automobile Driving / statistics & numerical data*
  • Biomarkers
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interview, Psychological
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation
  • Recurrence
  • Sex Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Substance-Related Disorders / diagnosis
  • Substance-Related Disorders / psychology*
  • Substance-Related Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult
  • gamma-Glutamylcyclotransferase / blood


  • Biomarkers
  • gamma-Glutamylcyclotransferase