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Am J Drug Alcohol Abuse. 1999 Aug;25(3):385-406.

Gender differences in drug treatment careers among clients in the national Drug Abuse Treatment Outcome Study.

Author information

  • 1UCLA Drug Abuse Research Center, Neuropsychiatric Institute, University of California, Los Angeles 90025, USA. grella@ucla.edu


Gender differences in the factors associated with having a history of drug treatment were examined among 7,652 individuals admitted into the Drug Abuse Treatment Outcome Study (DATOS), a national multisite prospective study. Bivariate relationships were examined between a history of prior drug treatment and variables measuring demographic and background characteristics, addiction career, treatment career parameters, family and social relationships, criminal justice involvement, and mental health status. Stepwise discriminant function analyses (DFAs) were conducted separately for men and women to determine both the common and unique characteristics associated with a history of prior drug treatment. More severe drug use history and criminal behavior were related to prior treatment history for both men and women. Prior drug treatment among men was associated with factors related to family opposition to drug use and support for treatment, whereas for women prior drug treatment was associated with antisocial personality disorder and self-initiation into treatment. Moreover, treatment initiation among men appears to be facilitated by social institutions, such as employment, the criminal justice system, and one's family. In contrast, treatment reentry among women was associated with referral by a social worker, suggesting that contact with family service agencies can facilitate women's treatment entry. The findings suggest that different strategies for increasing treatment utilization may be appropriate for men and women.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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