Cellular Photo Digital Breathalyzer for Monitoring Alcohol Use: A Pilot Study

Skipper, Gregory E.; Thon, Natasha; DuPont, Robert L.; Campbell, Michael D.; Weinmann, Wolfgang; Wurst, Friedrich M. (2014). Cellular Photo Digital Breathalyzer for Monitoring Alcohol Use: A Pilot Study. European addiction research, 20(3), pp. 137-142. Karger 10.1159/000355834

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Background: Monitoring alcohol use is important in numerous situations. Direct
ethanol metabolites, such as ethyl glucuronide (EtG), have been shown to be
useful tools in detecting alcohol use and documenting abstinence. For very
frequent or continuous control of abstinence, they lack practicability.
Therefore, devices measuring ethanol itself might be of interest. This pilot
study aims at elucidating the usability and accuracy of the cellular photo
digital breathalyzer (CPDB) compared to self-reports in a naturalistic setting.
Method: 12 social drinkers were included. Subjects used a CPDB 4 times daily,
kept diaries of alcohol use and submitted urine for EtG testing over a period of
5 weeks. Results: In total, the 12 subjects reported 84 drinking episodes. 1,609 breath tests were performed and 55 urine EtG tests were collected. Of 84 drinking episodes, CPDB detected 98.8%. The compliance rate for breath testing was 96%. Of the 55 EtG tests submitted, 1 (1.8%) was positive. Conclusions: The data suggest that the CPDB device holds promise in detecting high, moderate, and low alcohol intake. It seems to have advantages compared to biomarkers and other Monitoring devices. The preference for CPDB by the participants might explain the high compliance. Further studies including comparison with biomarkers and transdermal devices are needed.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine > Forensic Chemistry and Toxicology

UniBE Contributor:

Weinmann, Wolfgang








Katrin Renfer

Date Deposited:

10 Jun 2014 10:22

Last Modified:

19 Jul 2016 15:11

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