The notion that there is an association between essential tremor (ET) and higher ethanol consumption has crept into the literature; however, the data are limited and conflicted. A total of 354 ET cases and 370 matched controls were enrolled in a clinical-epidemiological study. Average current daily ethanol consumption was estimated using the Willett Semi-quantitative Food Frequency Questionnaire. The proportion of cases and controls who drank any ethanol was similar: 66.7% vs. 64.1%, p = 0.46, as was the proportion who reported heavy ethanol consumption: 4.0% vs. 3.5%, p = 0.74. The average daily ethanol intake was numerically higher in cases than controls (7.99 ± 12.39 [median = 3.03] vs. 6.55 ± 10.62 [median = 1.80] g), but this difference did not reach significance (p = 0.15). Among cases, there was no correlation between average daily ethanol intake and tremor severity (r = 0.008, p = 0.88). These data, on more than 700 enrollees, do not support any sizable differences between ET cases and controls in terms of average daily ethanol consumption or ethanol overuse. The absence of a correlation in cases between ethanol consumption and tremor severity goes against the hypothesis that ET patients are self-medicating to a significant degree.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of the Neurological Sciences|
|State||Published - Dec 15 2014|
- Essential tremor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology