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Neuropsychopharmacology. 2005 May;30(5):1006-18.

Risk of becoming cocaine dependent: epidemiological estimates for the United States, 2000-2001.

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  • 1Department of Mental Health, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA.

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  • Neuropsychopharmacology. 2005 Aug;30(8):1588.


In this paper, we present new estimates for the risk of becoming cocaine dependent within 24 months after first use of the drug, and study subgroup variation in this risk. The study estimates are based on the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse conducted during 2000-2001, with a representative sample of US residents aged 12 years and older (n=114 241). A total of 1081 respondents were found to have used cocaine for the first time within 24 months prior to assessment. Between 5 and 6% of these recent-onset users had become cocaine dependent since onset of use. Less [corrected] risk of recent cocaine dependence soon after onset of cocaine use was found for female subjects, young adults aged 21-25 years, and non-Hispanic Black/African-Americans. Use of crack-cocaine and taking cocaine by injection were associated with having become cocaine dependent soon after onset of use. These epidemiologic findings help to quantify the continuing public health burden associated with new onsets of cocaine use in the 21st century.

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