Using multi-level data to estimate the effect of an 'alcogenic' environment on hazardous alcohol consumption in the former Soviet Union

Health Place. 2014 May;27:205-11. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2014.02.015. Epub 2014 Mar 22.


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess whether alcohol-related community characteristics act collectively to influence individual-level alcohol consumption in the former Soviet Union (fSU).

Methods and results: Using multi-level data from nine countries in the fSU we conducted a factor analysis of seven alcohol-related community characteristics. The association between any latent factors underlying these characteristics and two measures of hazardous alcohol consumption was then analysed using a population average regression modelling approach. Our factor analysis produced one factor with an eigenvalue >1 (EV=1.28), which explained 94% of the variance. This factor was statistically significantly associated with increased odds of CAGE problem drinking (OR=1.40 (1.08-1.82)). The estimated association with EHD was not statistically significant (OR=1.10 (0.85-1.44)).

Conclusions: Our findings suggest that a high number of beer, wine and spirit advertisements and high alcohol outlet density may work together to create an 'alcogenic' environment that encourages hazardous alcohol consumption in the fSU.

Keywords: Alcohol consumption; Environmental factors; Epidemiologic factors; USSR.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Advertising / statistics & numerical data
  • Alcohol Drinking / epidemiology
  • Alcoholic Beverages
  • Alcoholism / epidemiology
  • Alcoholism / etiology*
  • Beer
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Residence Characteristics / statistics & numerical data
  • USSR / epidemiology
  • Wine
  • Young Adult