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Addiction. 2006 Jul;101(7):1014-26.

An evaluation of a brief motivational intervention among young ecstasy and cocaine users: no effect on substance and alcohol use outcomes.

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1
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, London, UK. j.marsden@iop.kcl.ac.uk

Abstract

AIMS:

To investigate whether a stimulant- and alcohol-focused brief motivational intervention induces positive behaviour change among young, regular users of MDMA ('ecstasy'), cocaine powder and crack cocaine.

DESIGN AND MEASUREMENTS:

A randomized trial of the intervention versus a control group who received written health risk information materials only. All participants completed a baseline self-assessment questionnaire before randomization. Outcome measures were self-reported period prevalence abstinence from ecstasy, cocaine powder and crack cocaine and the frequency and amount of stimulant and alcohol use in the previous 90 days, recorded at 6-month follow-up via self-completion questionnaire and personal interview.

PARTICIPANTS AND SETTING:

A total of 342 adolescent and young adult stimulant users (aged 16-22 years) were recruited and 87% were followed-up. The intervention was delivered by a team of 12 agency youth drug workers and two researchers at five locations in Greater London and south-east England.

FINDINGS:

There were no significant differences in abstinence for ecstasy, cocaine powder or crack cocaine use between the experimental and control groups. Contrasting follow-up with baseline self-reports, there were no between-group effects for changes in the frequency or amount of stimulant or alcohol use. Participant follow-up data suggested that the baseline assessment was a contributing factor in within-group behaviour change among experimental and control condition participants.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our brief motivational intervention was no more effective at inducing behaviour change than the provision of information alone. We hypothesize that research recruitment, baseline self-assessment and contact with study personnel are influences that induce positive reactive effects on stimulant use.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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