Article: article from journal or magazin.
Sport and alcohol: An emergency department study in Switzerland.
European Journal of Sport Science
The aim of the present study was to empirically determine whether: (a) sport injuries were associated with alcohol consumption before the injury (acute intake) and with usual consumption patterns (chronic high intake and heavy intake on single occasions); (b) the risk of sport injuries related to alcohol consumption differs from that of other injuries; and (c) there are differences between the sexes and between types of sport. Data from 8694 patients attending the emergency department of Lausanne University Hospital between 1 January 2003 and 30 June 2004 were analysed. Of those patients, 4861 came to the hospital because of an injury and 885 patients were identified as having a sport injury (18.2%). Logistic regression was used to estimate the odds ratios of injury relating to alcohol consumption. With increasingly acute intake, the risk of sport and other injuries increased (sports injury and alcohol use in the 6 h before injury compared with no use: odds ratio=4.29, 7.46, and 14.75 for low, medium, and high alcohol use among women, and 2.81, 3.39, and 1.64 for low, medium, and high alcohol use among men). Alcohol consumption was associated with an increasingly higher risk of sport injuries compared with other injuries among women (consumption 6 h before injury: odds ratio=1.12, 1.23, and 1.56 for low, medium, and high alcohol use), but not men (odds ratio=1.17, 0.83, and 0.23 for low, medium, and high alcohol use). Regarding usual consumption patterns, those men and women injured while exercising were more often at-risk drinkers (men: 44%; women: 25%) compared with those injured during other activities (men: 37%; women: 13%). The results indicate that both men and women, but particularly women, should not practise sports after alcohol ingestion. The study raises questions as to whether sport should be generally promoted as an alternative to alcohol consumption in prevention programmes. Whereas some sports seem to be protective (e.g. endurance and fitness sport) for risky alcohol use, the majority are not. It is important to note, however, that we do not dismiss the beneficial effects of practising for an individual's health. The other positive aspect of practising, namely interacting socially with others, may come at the price of an increased alcohol use, particularly in a wet culture like Switzerland where any social contact is often accompanied by alcohol consumption.
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