What is Alcohol?


he alcohol in an alcoholic drink is ethanol, produced by fermenting grains, fruits, or other foods that contain sugar. Alcohol has been used as a beverage since prehistoric times. It is mentioned in ancient Egypt, Babylon, and many other societies.

Alcohol produces intoxication due to its chemical composition. Because alcohol molecules are so small, they easily disrupt the brain’s neurotransmitters. The body cannot store alcohol, so it is broken down by the liver and excreted in urine.

What is Alcohol

What Conditions is Alcohol Associated With?

Many people consume alcohol during recreational activities. Consumed infrequently, it may have few or no health effects. However, it is also associated with an extremely wide variety of dire health conditions, many of which are chronic and/or can be fatal.

About 15 million Americans suffer from an alcohol abuse disorder.

What’s more, only about 6.7% of people who have a drinking problem seek professional help. About 88,000 people die of alcohol-related causes every year. Problem drinking can result in physical dependence on alcohol.

Since alcohol consumption leads to reductions in reaction time, judgment, and decision-making, any episode of drinking can lead to harmful accidents or injury. However, most health risks of alcohol come from problem drinking, including binge drinking.

Conditions associated with long-term alcohol misuse include:

  • High blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular events
  • Cirrhosis (permanent scarring) of the liver caused by alcohol exposure
  • A higher risk of certain cancers, including breast, mouth, throat, and liver
  • Decline in cognitive performance, especially in learning and memory
  • Greater likelihood of mental health complications like anxiety and depression

What Research Currently Exists on the Effects of Alcohol?

For many years, research around alcohol focused on the idea that it had health benefits if used in moderation. However, recent research is casting doubt on these long-held assumptions.

Over the last five years, scientific studies have confirmed the connection between even moderate alcohol use and premature death, cancer, stroke, and high blood pressure. Some studies also suggest that abstaining from alcohol can improve mental health.

In general, a scientific consensus is forming around the idea that zero alcohol consumption is the best approach for individuals who want to safeguard their overall health.

Why Are Further Clinical Trials on the Effects of Alcohol Important?

Alcohol and its risks have been researched extensively. However, there are still many areas where more findings are needed. 40%-60% of people treated for alcoholism eventually relapse. The precise brain chemistry involved in alcoholism and successfully abstaining from problem drinking are not understood. Quality of support for sufferers can be spotty.

A limited number of medications are available to help people with alcoholism. However, these are effective in only a fraction of cases.

Clinical Trials on the Effects of Alcohol

Likewise, further research is necessary to support the anecdotal conclusions of treatment organizations, especially faith-based organizations, about the best way to provide social support during long-term treatment.

Current Clinical Trials on the Effects of Alcohol

This is the most recent list of clinical trials on the effects of alcohol submitted to ClinicalTrials.gov.

Alcohol clinical resources are developed by organizations worldwide. Watch this space for further information about alcohol studies that may lead to groundbreaking treatment. If you have a study to include on our site, contact our team.

  • Factors Predicting Outcome in Group Treatment of Alcohol Use Disorders (AUDs)
    on March 30, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    Conditions:   Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD);   Alcohol Abuse;   Drug Abuse;   Psychiatric Disorder;   Personality Disorders;   Cognitive Deficit;   Cognitive Impairment;   Substance Use DisordersIntervention:   Sponsors:   The Hospital of Vestfold;   Oslo University Hospital;   Borgestadklinikken, Blue Cross Clinic;   Behandlingssenteret Eina, Blue Cross Clinic;   A-senteret Oslo, Church City Mission;   University of Southern Denmark;   University of New MexicoRecruiting

  • Alcohol and Sex Risk mHealth-Enhanced Brief Intervention for BLMSM
    on March 29, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    Condition:   Heavy Drinking and Sexual Risk BehaviorIntervention:   Behavioral: Brief mhealth intervention + mobile messaging to reduce sexual risk behavior and heavy drinkingSponsor:   Boston University Charles River CampusRecruiting

  • Hyaluronic Acid in Postoperative Cures in the Phenol/Alcohol Technique
    on March 23, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    Conditions:   Nails, Ingrown;   Hyaluronic AcidInterventions:   Drug: Hialucic;   Drug: Betadine gelSponsor:   University of MalagaRecruiting

  • Marijuana Use, Strength Training, and Alcohol Consumption (MUSTAC) Study
    on March 10, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Condition:   Chronic PainInterventions:   Behavioral: Eccentric Biceps Flexion;   Behavioral: Concentric Biceps FlexionSponsors:   University of Florida;   NATL INST OF HLTH NIAAA;   Research Society on Alcoholism;   University of Florida Center for Addiction Research and Education;   University of Florida Department of Clinical and Health PsychologyRecruiting

  • Safety, Tolerability, and Bioeffects of Alirocumab in Non-treatment Seeking Heavy Drinkers
    on March 4, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Conditions:   Alcohol Associated Liver Disease;   Heavy Drinking BehaviorInterventions:   Drug: Alirocumab;   Other: PlaceboSponsor:   National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)Recruiting

  • Effectiveness of High-frequency rTMS in Reducing Alcohol Consumption in Non-abstinent Patients With an Alcohol Use Disorder
    on February 26, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Conditions:   Alcoholism;   rTMS StimulationInterventions:   Device: Active rTMS;   Device: Placebo rTMS;   Other: Questionnaires;   Device: BreathalyzerSponsor:   Centre Hospitalier Universitaire DijonRecruiting

  • A Pilot Study of Non-invasive Brain Stimulation to Boost the Efficacy of Psychotherapy in a Community Sample of People Who Drink Alcohol
    on February 25, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Condition:   Alcohol Use DisorderInterventions:   Device: High-density transcranial alternating current stimulation;   Device: Sham stimulation;   Behavioral: Motivational interviewingSponsors:   The Mind Research Network;   National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)Recruiting

  • Fecal Microbial Transplantation in Severe Alcoholic Hepatitis
    on February 17, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Condition:   Alcoholic HepatitisIntervention:   Biological: Fecal microbial transplantationSponsor:   F.D. Roosevelt Teaching Hospital with Policlinic Banska BystricaRecruiting

  • A Case-CrossovEr Study deSign to Inform Tailored Interventions to Prevent Disease Progression in Acute Pancreatitis
    on February 8, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Conditions:   Pancreatitis, Acute;   Alcohol Drinking;   Health BehaviorIntervention:   Sponsors:   Cedars-Sinai Medical Center;   United States Department of Defense;   University of Pittsburgh;   Alcohol Research Group;   Ohio State University;   VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare SystemRecruiting

  • TREAT Child Alcohol Use Disorder (C-AUD) in Eastern Uganda
    on February 8, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Conditions:   Alcohol Abuse;   Alcohol Drinking;   Alcoholism;   Alcohol Use Disorder;   Alcohol Dependence;   Child Abuse;   Child Malnutrition;   Child Neglect;   Child Mental Disorder;   Child, OnlyIntervention:   Sponsors:   University of Bergen;   The Research Council of Norway;   Makerere University;   Norwegian University of Science and TechnologyRecruiting

  • Online Mindfulness-Based College for Young Adults
    on February 2, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Conditions:   Depressive Symptoms;   Loneliness;   Sedentary Behavior;   Mindfulness;   Physical Activity;   Diet;   Sleep;   Emotional Regulation;   Alcohol Consumption, Youth;   Stress, PsychologicalInterventions:   Behavioral: Mindfulness-Based College for Young Adults;   Other: Health Education for Young AdultsSponsor:   Eric LoucksRecruiting

  • Identifying and Managing Alcohol-related Health Problems in General Practice
    on January 26, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Conditions:   Alcohol-Related Disorders;   Alcohol Problem;   Alcohol Drug Interaction;   Alcohol Use DisorderIntervention:   Behavioral: 'Change' - an e-health interventionSponsors:   Helse Stavanger HF;   University of Oslo;   Northumbria UniversityRecruiting


Alcohol has been part of human history for thousands of years. However, modern medicine still has a long way to go in managing the serious health risks associated with it. More alcohol clinical studies are crucial for discovering the alcohol clinical resources millions of people need to stop drinking.