Practice habits, knowledge, and attitudes of hepatologists to alcohol use disorder medication: Sobering gaps and opportunities

Thomas G. Cotter, Fares Ayoub, Andrea C. King, Kapuluru Gautham Reddy, Michael Charlton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: The prevalence of alcohol use disorder (AUD) and alcohol-associated liver disease is increasing in the United States. Efficacious AUD pharmacotherapies, while available, are, for protean reasons, underutilized. Hepatology providers may be in a position to bridge the pharmacotherapeutic gap between availability and utilization of AUD pharmacotherapies. Our aim was to ascertain the current practice, knowledge and attitudes of hepatology physicians in the United States, and identify opportunities on how to increase AUD medication prescribing. Methods: A web-based survey, developed by an expert panel, was administered to hepatology physicians working at all transplant centers in the United States. Results: The survey response rate was 131/658 (20%). There was significant support (two-thirds of respondents) for hepatology providers prescribing AUD medications; however, only 1 in 4 was comfortable prescribing these medications. The majority felt additional education is needed to prescribe AUD medications. The practice of hepatology providers prescribing AUD medications is common, with >50% of respondents having done so. Baclofen was the most popular medication prescribed. Hepatology providers perceived suboptimal ancillary addiction services. Although AUD prescribers had higher rates of AUD pharmacotherapy knowledge compared with nonprescribers, approximately 50% still had inadequate knowledge. Conclusions: AUD medication prescribing is a common practice among hepatology providers who appear eager to increase this practice through more education as they attempt to bridge the pharmacotherapeutic gap. This informative survey provides guidance for professional societies on how best to disseminate the requisite education required to optimize the care of patients with AUD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere603
JournalTransplantation Direct
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation

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