Studies that evaluated a substance-abuse intervention aimed at reducing or eliminating adolescent (12 to 19 years) alcohol use were eligible for inclusion. Eligible comparisons were wait-list control and contrasting treatment. Studies that evaluated pharmacological therapies were included only if these were administered as part of an integrated treatment programme combined with one or more psychosocial interventions. Eligible outcomes were abstinence, frequency of alcohol use and quantity of alcohol use measured between one month and one year upon completion of treatment. Studies that evaluated prevention interventions were excluded.
Interventions in the included studies included behavioural treatment, brief motivational interviewing, triple modality social learning, assertive continuing care, multisystemic therapy, cognitive-behavioural therapy with or without active aftercare, integrated family and cognitive-behavioural therapy, multidimensional family therapy, brief strategic family therapy and brief interview either with or without one parent. Duration and number of sessions varied between studies. Outcomes included days or frequency of alcohol use, days to alcohol use, time absent from alcohol, severity of alcohol use and alcohol binge days. All the included studies were conducted in USA.
The authors did not state how many reviewers performed the selection.