Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Drug Alcohol Rev. 2008 May;27(3):286-91. doi: 10.1080/09595230801914784.

Trends in methamphetamine use in young injection drug users in San Francisco from 1998 to 2004: the UFO Study.

Author information

  • 1Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA.



To describe temporal trends in methamphetamine use among young injection drug users (IDU) in San Francisco.


Secondary analysis of cross-sectional baseline data collected for a longitudinal study of young IDU from 1998 to 2004. Participants were 1445 young IDU (<30 years old) who reported injection in the previous month, English-speaking, and recruited by street outreach methods. We examined trends for: lifetime (ever) and recent (30-day) methamphetamine use, including injected and non-injected, and by age group and sexual risk behaviour [men who have sex with men injecting drug users (MSM-IDU), male IDU (non-MSM) and female IDU].


In 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003 and 2004 we interviewed 237, 276, 431, 310, 147 and 44 participants, respectively. Overall, median age was 22 years [interquartile range (IQR) 20-25], 30.3% were women and median duration of injecting was 4.4 years (IQR 2-7). Prevalence of methamphetamine use was high, with 50.1% reporting recent injection, but overall there were no temporal increases in reported 'ever' injected use. Recent methamphetamine injection (past 30 days) increased significantly, and peaked at 60% in 2003. MSM-IDU had higher methamphetamine injection ever (92.3%) and recently (59.5%) compared to heterosexual male (non-MSM) IDU (81.6% and 47.3%, respectively) and to female IDU (78.4% and 46.1%, respectively).


Despite reports of ubiquitous increases in methamphetamine use, there were no significant increases in 6 years in ever injecting methamphetamine overall among young IDU. MSM-IDU who reported the highest methamphetamine use overall reported some increases in recent injected use. The methamphetamine 'epidemic' was probably under way among young IDU earlier than other populations.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk