Estimate of adolescent alcohol use in China: a meta-analysisReport as inadecuate

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Archives of Public Health

, 74:45

First Online: 25 October 2016Received: 18 August 2016Accepted: 05 October 2016DOI: 10.1186-s13690-016-0157-5

Cite this article as: Feng, Y. & Newman, I.M. Arch Public Health 2016 74: 45. doi:10.1186-s13690-016-0157-5


ObjectiveA profile of adolescent alcohol use for China that specified gender, school type and a consistent definition of alcohol use.

MethodA total of 1,646 papers were identified in the Chinese- and English-language literature published 2007–2015 that reported Chinese adolescent drinking rates. Selection criteria were established a priori. Thirty-two papers met all the selection criteria. Five papers were eliminated because they were found to be duplicate reports of the same data.

ResultThe resulting sample included 26 papers—24 in Chinese and two in English, 20 describing middle school students, 12 describing high school students, and six describing vocational high school students. Eleven papers described students in more than one type of school. Last 30 day use of alcohol was, as expected, highest among vocational high school students 44.7 % males, 28.8 % females and drinking rates were higher for high school students 36.5 % males, 21.2 % females than for middle school students 23.6 % males, 15.3 % females. Meta-regression identified factors associated with differences in drinking rates reported in individual studies as the definition of a drink and whether data were collected by trained personnel. Location appeared important, but its effects were inconsistent across different populations, which suggests that national estimates likely blur regional differences in patterns of alcohol use.

ConclusionRates derived from this meta-analysis provide a useful reference for scholars interested in China, alcohol use, adolescents, and patterns of use. The meta-regression analysis suggested practical ways to improve adolescent alcohol surveys in China.

KeywordsAlcohol Adolescents China AbbreviationsABVAlcohol by volume

CIConfidence interval

CNKIChina National Knowledge Infrastructure index of publications

WFWanfang index of publications

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Author: Yonghua Feng - Ian M. Newman


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