Research & Resources

A Latent Profile Analysis of Blackout Drinking Behavior Among Young Adults

This study aimed to identify latent profiles of young adults based on blackout drinking experiences and to examine person-level predictors and outcomes associated with profile membership. Participants were 542 young adults (ages 18–30) who reported more than 1 past-year blackout episode. Four latent profiles were identified based on blackout drinking frequency, blackout intentions, blackout expectancies, and age of first blackout: Low-Risk Blackout, Experimental Blackout, At-Risk Blackout, and High-Risk Blackout. Notably, the At-Risk and High-Risk Blackout profiles had the highest alcohol use disorder risk, most memory lapses and cognitive concerns, and highest levels of impulsivity traits. Findings supported the multifaceted nature of blackout drinking experiences and perceptions. Profiles were differentiated across person-level predictors and outcomes, which identified potential intervention targets and individuals at heightened alcohol-related risk. Researchers proposed that a more comprehensive understanding of the heterogeneity of blackout drinking characteristics might be useful for early detection and intervention of problematic alcohol use predictors and patterns among young adults.

This paper, “A latent profile analysis of blackout drinking behavior among young adults,” was funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) and the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and published in the journal Drug and alcohol dependence.

Link to full item