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In Frontiers in psychiatry

Purpose: The number of patients with alcohol-related problems is steadily increasing. A large-scale survey of alcohol-related problems has been conducted. However, studies that predict hazardous drinkers and identify which factors contribute to the prediction are limited. Thus, the purpose of this study was to predict hazardous drinkers and the severity of alcohol-related problems of patients using a deep learning algorithm based on a large-scale survey data. Materials and Methods: Datasets of National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of South Korea (K-NHANES), a nationally representative survey for the entire South Korean population, were used to train deep learning and conventional machine learning algorithms. Datasets from 69,187 and 45,672 participants were used to predict hazardous drinkers and the severity of alcohol-related problems, respectively. Based on the degree of contribution of each variable to deep learning, it was possible to determine which variable contributed significantly to the prediction of hazardous drinkers. Results: Deep learning showed the higher performance than conventional machine learning algorithms. It predicted hazardous drinkers with an AUC (Area under the receiver operating characteristic curve) of 0.870 (Logistic regression: 0.858, Linear SVM: 0.849, Random forest classifier: 0.810, K-nearest neighbors: 0.740). Among 325 variables for predicting hazardous drinkers, energy intake was a factor showing the greatest contribution to the prediction, followed by carbohydrate intake. Participants were classified into Zone I, Zone II, Zone III, and Zone IV based on the degree of alcohol-related problems, showing AUCs of 0.881, 0.774, 0.853, and 0.879, respectively. Conclusion: Hazardous drinking groups could be effectively predicted and individuals could be classified according to the degree of alcohol-related problems using a deep learning algorithm. This algorithm could be used to screen people who need treatment for alcohol-related problems among the general population or hospital visitors.

Kim Suk-Young, Park Taesung, Kim Kwonyoung, Oh Jihoon, Park Yoonjae, Kim Dai-Jin


K-NHANES, alcohol dependence, alcohol related problems, alcohol use disorder, deep learning, hazardous drinkers, hazardous drinking, machine learning