Chapter 202: Alcohol Use Disorder

Alcohol use disorder is defined as repeated alcohol-related difficulties in at least 2 of 11 life areas that cluster together in the same 12-month period (Table 202-1).

TABLE 202-1: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, Classification of Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

Two or more of the following items occurring in the same 12-month period must be endorsed for the diagnosis of an alcohol use disordera:

 Drinking resulting in recurrent failure to fulfill role obligations

 Recurrent drinking in hazardous situations

 Continued drinking despite alcohol-related social or interpersonal problems


 Withdrawal, or substance use for relief/avoidance of withdrawal

 Drinking in larger amounts or for longer than intended

 Persistent desire/unsuccessful attempts to stop or reduce drinking

 Great deal of time spent obtaining, using, or recovering from alcohol

 Important activities given up/reduced because of drinking

 Continued drinking despite knowledge of physical or psychological problems caused by alcohol

 Alcohol craving

aMild AUD: 2–3 criteria required; Moderate AUD: 4–5 items endorsed; Severe AUD: 6 or more items endorsed.

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