Stability of subtypes of natural recovery from alcohol dependence after two years

Gallus Bischof*, Hans Jürgen Rumpf, Christian Meyer, Ulfert Hapke, Ulrich John

*Corresponding author for this work
24 Citations (Scopus)


Aims: The lack of consistent findings in studies on natural recovery from alcohol dependence may reflect heterogeneous subgroups according to social support and problem severity. In a previous report, we identified the following groups: high severity of dependence, low alcohol-related problems and low social support (low problems-low support: LPLS), high severity of dependence, high alcohol-related problems and medium social support (high problems-medium support: HPMS) and high social support, late age of onset, low severity of dependence and low alcohol-related problems (low problems-high support: LPHS). However, little is known about the trajectories of these groups. The aim of the present study is to analyse the stability of these three groups report on longer-term outcomes. Design and participants: A cohort of initially untreated remitters recruited through media solicitation (n = 178) was followed-up after 24 months. Measurements: Personal interviews using standardized instruments including social support together with interview data from collaterals. Results: Differences between the cluster groups in social support diminished over time; however, even at follow-up, LPLS revealed less social support by friends when compared to LPHS and showed significant higher rates of relapse and utilization of formal help than did HPHS and LPHS. Conclusions: Data show that the interplay between psychosocial resources and substance-related problems may still account for differences in trajectories of naturally remitted individuals in a 2-year follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)904-908
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 06.2007

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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