Objectives: The aim of the study was to establish frequency, severity and circumstances of alcohol and drug intoxications in adolescents admitted to inpatient wards in the Czech Republic.
Methods: Chief physician of each participating ward (or their designated deputy) searched the patient records for required information. The data was then statistically processed.
Results: Thirty inpatient paediatric wards participated in the study (27 district wards and 3 university hospital wards), amounting to more than a third of all paediatric wards in the country. The total number of intoxications reported was 2,176, the majority of which were alcohol-related (84.5%), followed by cannabinoids and, to a lesser degree, amphetamines. The number of alcohol intoxications increased by 22% during the 5-year observation period, whilst the frequency of illegal drugs intoxications remained the same. We also observed an increase in the percentage of alcohol intoxications in girls - from 42% to 45.5%. The mean age at intoxication was low - 15.5 years. The Glasgow Coma Scale in individual episodes of intoxication increased during the study duration/follow up period. The proportion of alcohol intoxications originating in pubs, clubs or other public institutions was 25%.
Conclusion: The number of alcohol intoxications has risen during the observation period. The age at which these intoxications occurred is very low. Of serious concern is the fact, that 25% of alcohol intoxications originated in places where alcohol is sold, despite the fact that majority of the adolescents were under the legal drinking age limit of 18 years.
Keywords: CRAFFT; abuse of addictive substances; adolescence; alcohol intoxication; cannabinoids; syndrome of risk behaviour in youth.
Copyright© by the National Institute of Public Health, Prague 2018.