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Subst Abus. 2009 Apr-Jun;30(2):118-26. doi: 10.1080/08897070902802034.

Alcohol-related problems among younger drinkers who misuse prescription drugs: results from the national epidemiologic survey of alcohol and related conditions (NESARC).

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Youth Alcohol Prevention Center and Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


The authors determined whether lifetime prescription drug misuse (PDM) associated with increased risks for alcohol-related problems among 18- to 34-year-old, NESARC respondents. Among 8222 "ever-drinkers," 15.4% reported ever "misusing sedatives, tranquilizers, painkillers or stimulants ... as prescriptions or from indirect sources." Outcomes were within two alcohol-related problem domains, "risk-taking behaviors," including driving while drinking, fights, injuries, and arrests, and "interpersonal troubles," including problems with jobs, family, or friends. Among all drinkers and among alcohol-dependent and cannabis-using subsamples, those reporting PDM were significantly more likely to report alcohol-related "risk-taking behaviors" or "interpersonal troubles" than were those without PDM. In adjusted analysis, young age drinking onsets, and heavy and dependent drinking independently increased these risks. Results of this cross-sectional analysis support the need for longitudinal data to more clearly define the association between drinking problems and PDM, and which can support prevention, treatment, and harm-reduction efforts for younger, multisubstance users.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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