Acute and chronic alcohol intake and alcohol withdrawal induce dysfunction of neuroendocrine and other regulatory systems. The aims of this study were to assess a possible hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dysfunction in population of alcoholics, using dexamethasone suppression test (DST). The study was approved by local Ethical Committee. The serum and urinary cortisol were compared between the groups of 89 male patients (64.5% depressive and 35.5% nondepressive alcoholics) (Hamilton test), before and after DST. In nondepressive patients, 50% was nonsupressive in DST. In depressive patients 46% was suppressive in DST test (serum cortisol). Twenty-four hours urinary excretion in group of nondepressive patients was supressed in 78% of cases; depressive patients showed 50.9% nonsupressors. Basal serum cortisol secretion was significantly lower in group of nondepressive than depressive patients. Also, serum concentration at 16 hours were significantly higher in group of the depressive nonsupressive patients. Basal urinary cortisol excretion was in normal range in all patients, but after dividing the patients into suppressible and nonsuppressible groups, significantly higher (P<0.002) basal urinary cortisol concentrations were found in latter. We concluded on the basis of DST test, as well basal cortisol measurement, that the neuroendocrine dysfunction of alcoholic patients could be present even if the depression is pronounced.