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Old 17-03-2006, 01:13 AM posted to talk.politics.drugs,uk.politics.drugs,
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Default Alcohol-related illness soars as 1 in 18 addicts get treatment

How really cares? This is a food and wine group...not the AA newsgroup! ;-)

"Jasbird" wrote in message
Alcohol-related illness soars as 1 in 18 addicts get treatment

Sarah Boseley, health editor
Wednesday March 15, 2006
The Guardian

Alcohol-related illness will soar in the next decade, experts
said yesterday as campaigners warned that only one in 18 people
with a drink problem get treatment.

Hospitals are already seeing dramatic rises in cases of liver
damage, doctors said. "As a nation, we are drinking more than
for 90 years and there is a lag between consumption and
cirrhosis," said a report from the British Society of
Gastroenterology. "Already we have seen a 350% increase in
cirrhosis between 1970 and 1998, and this figure is 900% for
those under 45 years of age."

Elwyn Elias, a gastroenterologist based at University Hospital,
Birmingham, and president of the society, said: "There is a 20
to 30 year lag between what people drink and hospitals filled
with the consequences. Binge drinking can have a sudden effect,
but you can also kill yourself in 20 years, by drinking what
some people consider a reasonable amount.

"The evidence is that drinking fell away in the 1930s and 1940s
but it's been climbing since the 1960s and there's no sign of a

The society's warnings came as Alcohol Concern called for urgent
action to address the under-funding of alcohol treatment

Two years after the government launched its alcohol harm
reduction strategy, only a small proportion of the people who
need treatment are getting it - even though every 1 spent on
treatment for alcohol addiction saves the NHS 5 in dealing with
alcohol-related illness and injury.

Alcohol kills 22,000 people every year, said the charity. "Every
year alcohol services help thousands of problem drinkers turn
their lives around, but the reality is that only one in every 18
people who need help get access to treatment," said Srabani Sen,
the chief executive.

Deaths from diseases of the digestive system have risen by a
quarter in the last 10 years, according to the society.

The incidence of colorectal cancer is increasing and accounted
for 14,000 deaths in 2000. Oesophageal cancer has increased by
50% in the last 20 years, and the mortality rate from liver
cancer has increased by 50% in 10 years. Britain's survival
rates for gastric, pancreatic and colorectal cancers lag behind
the rest of Europe, the report says.

Alcohol Concern says that 8.2 million people in England have an
alcohol problem, and about 1.1 million of those are dependent on

Some 1.3 million children are affected by their parents' alcohol
problems. Alcohol misuse costs the economy 18bn a year.