Severity of Alcohol Dependence Questionnaire (SADQ)
Recommended frequency: Every 8 weeks
The Severity of Alcohol Dependence Questionnaire was developed by the Addiction Research Unit at the Maudsley Hospital. It is a measure of the severity of dependence. The SADQ questions cover the following aspects of dependency syndrome:
- Physical withdrawal symptoms;
- Affective withdrawal symptoms;
- Relief drinking; frequency of alcohol consumption; and
- Speed of onset of withdrawal symptoms
A validity study showed data indicating that individual items, sections and also the total scores of the SADQ have consistently high test-retest reliability coefficients. In addition, it is shown that SADQ scores have low, but significant, correlations with indicators of withdrawal severity for individuals treated at a Detoxification Unit. SADQ scores failed to correlate with indices of liver functioning. The study concludes that the SADQ is a quick, reliable and valid instrument.
Please recall a typical period of heavy drinking in the last 2 months. Please answer all the following questions about your drinking by circling your most appropriate response.
During that period of heavy drinking…
Imagine the following situation:
1. You have been completely off drink for a few weeks
2. You then drink very heavily for two days
How would you feel the morning after those two days of drinking?
A score of 31 or higher indicates “severe alcohol dependence”. A score of 16 -30 indicates “moderate dependence”. A score of below 16 usually indicates only a mild physical dependency. The authors note that a chlordiazepoxide detoxification regime is usually indicated for someone who scores 16 or over.
Stockwell, T., Murphy, D. & Hodgson, R. (1983). The severity of alcohol dependence questionnaire: Its use, reliability and validity. British Journal of Addiction, 78(2), 45-156.