Hospital admissions for alcohol-related liver disease have begun to drop, according to a new study.

The research by doctors from St Vincent's Hospital and the Mater Hospital in Dublin show that 14,000 people were admitted to hospital for the treatment of alcohol dependence in 2011.

That was a 17% decrease on 2010.

However, it follows a trebling of people being treated for liver damage from the mid-90s until 2010.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Professor Aiden McCormick said while the reduction in hospital admissions was good news, a corresponding decrease in liver disease is not yet apparent.

He said the findings could point to a different pattern of drinking among Irish people.