Nutritional deficiency, liver dysfunction, and abnormal brain structure are common among alcoholics. Whether these conditions are related to each other and to long-term abstinence was evaluated by Pfefferbaum et al. (p. 1190). Men with chronic alcoholism in an inpatient treatment program had abnormal red blood cell and liver enzyme values after 1 week of sobriety. Red blood cell count, hemoglobin, and hematocrit correlated with the brain volumes of white matter and lateral ventricles, but liver function was not related to brain volume. At discharge, after 3 additional weeks of abstinence, the blood and ventricular volume measurements improved. These discharge values for red blood cell count, hemoglobin, and hematocrit were higher in the 17 men who stayed sober during the following 2–12 months than in the 22 men who relapsed. Hematological measures may help in identifying mechanisms of relapse and developing pharmacological treatments for alcoholism.