Choice A

You have signs of alcohol dependence

Ms. Martinez: Do you think I’m an alcoholic?

Physician: Based on what you’ve said, you do have signs of alcohol dependence. Your depressed mood, insomnia, and fatigue may well be caused by your heavy drinking, and if so, they usually go away within a couple of weeks of stopping. So really, the drinking is the first thing we need to deal with.

Choice B

You are an alcoholic

Ms. Martinez: Do you think I’m an alcoholic?

Physician: Yes. Your drinking is in the alcoholic range. In addition, your depression, insomnia, and fatigue are likely caused by your alcoholism. So really, the drinking is the first thing we need to address.

Choice C

You are not an alcoholic

Ms. Martinez: Do you think I’m an alcoholic?

Physician: No – I don’t think you’re an alcoholic. I suspect that your depression is at the root of your drinking. Once we address the depression, the drinking will likely take care of itself. Let’s talk about appropriate antidepressant treatment first.


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