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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1991 Oct;165(4 Pt 1):924-7.

Drug abuse screening of childbearing-age women in Alabama public health clinics.

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Department of Public Health, University of Alabama, Birmingham.


During August 1989, the urine of 5010 women of childbearing-age in Alabama was screened for marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, and barbiturates. The data base consisted of 2970 pregnant women, 374 of whom were at high risk, and 2019 nonpregnant women. Our findings included the following information: (1) The statewide prevalence of positive screens for any drugs tested was 12.9% for all women (11.0% for those who were pregnant and 15.6% for those who were not pregnant). (2) There was no difference between urban and rural groups for any drugs tested. (3) Positive marijuana screens were increased among white and nonpregnant women (p less than 0.01). (4) Positive cocaine screens were increased among black and single women (p less than 0.01). (5) More screens were positive in women older than age 20 (p less than 0.01). (6) There was no difference between pregnant and nonpregnant women for positive cocaine screens. (7) No difference existed among the trimesters of pregnancy for positive cocaine screens. (8) Positive screens for marijuana were more frequent in the first trimester of pregnancy than in the second trimester (p = 0.02) or the third trimester (p = 0.001). (9) There was no difference between high-risk and low-risk maternity patients for any drugs tested.

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