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1. Reasons for Heavy Drinking Questionnaire (RHDQ)

Year: 2016

Anton, Raymond F.

The RHDQ is a brief, 7-item, self-report tool to capture domains relevant to reasons people may drink to excess. Participants rate each item by marking a position on a visual analog scale ranging from 0 ("strongly disagree") to 100 ("strongly agree") presented as a line on a tablet computer. Scores are computed by the software based on the relative position marked on each line. Items in the scale include statements such as "I drink because it is pleasurable," "I drink because I feel abnormal when I don't drink," and "I drink solely out of habit." Analysis of the scale generally supported two factors: Reinforcement and Normalizing. High scores on the Reinforcement factor indicated a tendency to endorse both hedonic (positive reinforcement) and stress relief (negative reinforcement) heavy drinking motives. High scores on the Normalizing factor reflected a predisposition toward consuming alcohol to “feel normal,” or to avoid negative physiological consequences associated with alcohol dependence and withdrawal and to reinstate homeostasis.

Instrument Use & Availability

A copy of the scale's items can be found in Table 2 of the source reference.

For more information, contact:
Raymond F. Anton
Charleston Alcohol Research Center
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Medical University of South Carolina
67 President Street, PH454
Charleston, SC 29425

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Instrument Details:

Source Reference:Adams ZW, Schacht JP, Randall P, Anton RF. The Reasons for Heavy Drinking Questionnaire: Factor structure and validity in alcohol-dependent adults involved in clinical trials. J Stud Alcohol Drugs 2016;77(2):354-361. doi: 10.15288/jsad.2016.77.354
Population studied:Adults
Instrument Type:Assessment
Validity/Reliability:Supporting the concurrent validity of the RHDQ, scores on both RHDQ scales were positively correlated with most other measures of alcohol-related cognitions, alcohol dependence, intensity of alcohol use, and past alcohol treatment. Compared with Reinforcement scores, Normalizing scores consistently demonstrated stronger correlations with more severe or chronic alcohol use indices (Adams et al., 2016).

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