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J Addict Dis. 2013;32(2):119-39. doi: 10.1080/10550887.2013.795465.

Substance use among women veterans: epidemiology to evidence-based treatment.

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  • 1Center for Health Care Evaluation , Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System, Menlo Park, CA 94025, USA.


An increasing percentage of women are U.S. Military Veterans. We review the substance misuse rates and comorbidities and the risk factors for and consequences of substance use among women Veterans. Women Veterans may have higher rates of substance misuse and comorbid psychiatric and medical disorders than male Veterans and women who are not Veterans. Studies support the AUDIT-C as a scaled marker of alcohol-related risk among female Veterans, but validated drug screening instruments are needed. We discuss evidence-based approaches in terms of treating women Veterans' substance misuse in primary and specialty care settings, along with knowledge gaps and potential research priorities to improve care in this special population.

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