The relationship of CAGE scores to predisposing factors, concurrent factors and potential consequences of alcohol consumption among high school students

Rebekah A Salaiz, University of Texas at El Paso

Abstract

This study examined the relationship of CAGE scores to predisposing factors, concurrent behaviors, and potential consequences of alcohol consumption in a large sample of high school students. The CAGE questionnaire is a combination of four questions; a total of 2 or more positive answers suggest the possibility of alcohol abuse. In addition to the primary focus, secondary questions were whether these relationships were similar between boys and girls and whether scores of 1, which does not indicate risk in adult samples, indicated risk in a high school sample. Data for this investigation were part of a larger investigation of the rates of alcohol consumption and alcohol related behaviors among a sample of high school students living on the border (McKinnon et. al, 2004). A total of 1,336 high school students from 16 different high schools in El Paso, Texas completed a self-administered anonymous questionnaire regarding alcohol use and alcohol-related behaviors based on standardized surveys including the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance and the Texas School Survey of Substance Abuse. The questionnaire was disseminated in the classroom to different grade levels (freshmen, sophomore, junior, and senior levels) by University of Texas at El Paso graduate research assistants. Results for predisposing factors showed that boys reported higher parental education, participating in few extra curricular activities, having their first drink at a younger age, and qualifying for free/reduced lunch than girls. Moreover, CAGE scores were negatively related to parental education, and associated with lower socioeconomic status. ^ Results for concurrent factors showed that boys reported greater rates of drinking, greater rates of binge drinking, and reported getting drunk more often than girls, and CAGE scores were associated with drinking behaviors and that those with CAGE scores of 2 or greater reported highest frequencies for consuming alcohol in the past 30 days and drinking to get drunk. Lastly, results for potential consequences showed that boys reported riding with someone who had been drinking, driving after drinking, driving after drinking five or more drinks, more frequent drinking-related problems, and engaging in more acts of sexual indiscretion; CAGE scores for potential consequences showed that CAGE scores were positively associate with consequences. ^ Suggestions for the findings are that intervention programs (i.e. BASICS) usually use screening criterion for eligibility. Few studies have examined the utility of intervention program and screening, hence, findings suggest that screening instruments such as the CAGE can be used among the high school sample.^

Subject Area

Education, Secondary|Health Sciences, Public Health|Education, Health

Recommended Citation

Salaiz, Rebekah A, "The relationship of CAGE scores to predisposing factors, concurrent factors and potential consequences of alcohol consumption among high school students" (2007). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI1444129.
http://digitalcommons.utep.edu/dissertations/AAI1444129

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