Background: Liver cirrhosis is a major cause of death in many developed countries. Binge drinking has been shown to increase the risk of liver cirrhosis.
Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the aggregate-level relation between the alcohol consumption and liver cirrhosis mortality rates in Russia.
Method: Age-standardized sex-specific male and female liver cirrhosis mortality data for the period 1970- 2005 and data on overall alcohol consumption were analyzed by means ARIMA (Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average) time series analysis.
Results: Alcohol consumption was significantly associated with both male and female liver cirrhosis mortality rates: a 1 liter increase in overall alcohol consumption would result in a 7.0% increase in the male liver cirrhosis mortality rate and in 6.2% increase in the female mortality rate. The results of the analysis suggest that 61.4% of all male liver cirrhosis deaths and 56.4% female deaths in Russia could be attributed to alcohol.
Conclusions: The outcomes of this study provide support for the hypothesis that alcohol is an important contributor to the liver cirrhosis mortality rate in Russian Federation. The findings from the present study have important implications in regards alcohol-related mortality prevention indicating that a restrictive alcohol policy can be considered as an effective measure of prevention in countries with higher rate of alcohol consumption.