The paper presents an evolution of the terminology and meaning of the notion of a disorder determined by many factors and currentlyknown as the "alcohol dependence syndrome".Characteristic features of the syndrome include psychologicaland physical dependence, as well aschanged alcohol tolerance. Diagnostic criteria of alcohol dependence according to the internationalclassification of diseases are listed. Specific traits of alcohol dependent persons' behavior during themedical interview and their most frequent ailmentsare outlined. The issue of epileptic fits in such casesis mentioned. As regards alcohol treatment, essential requirements for conducting psychotherapy arereminded. Results attained by AA groups participationand the 12 Steps approach are highlighted.