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Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2010 Jan;67(1):85-93. doi: 10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2009.173.

Brief, personality-targeted coping skills interventions and survival as a non-drug user over a 2-year period during adolescence.

Author information

1
Addictions Department, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, 4 Windsor Walk, Denmark Hill, London SE5 8AF, United Kingdom. patricia.conrod@kcl.ac.uk

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Selective interventions targeting personality risk are showing promise in the prevention of problematic drinking behavior, but their effect on illicit drug use has yet to be evaluated.

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the efficacy of targeted coping skills interventions on illicit drug use in adolescents with personality risk factors for substance misuse.

DESIGN:

Randomized controlled trial.

SETTING:

Secondary schools in London, United Kingdom.

PARTICIPANTS:

A total of 5302 students were screened to identify 2028 students aged 13 to 16 years with elevated scores on self-report measures of hopelessness, anxiety sensitivity, impulsivity, and sensation seeking. Seven hundred thirty-two students provided parental consent to participate in this trial.

INTERVENTION:

Participants were randomly assigned to a control no-intervention condition or a 2-session group coping skills intervention targeting 1 of 4 personality profiles.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

The trial was designed and powered to primarily evaluate the effect of the intervention on the onset, prevalence, and frequency of illicit drug use over a 2-year period.

RESULTS:

Intent-to-treat repeated-measures analyses on continuous measures of drug use revealed time x intervention effects on the number of drugs used (P < .01) and drug use frequency (P < .05), whereby the control group showed significant growth in the number of drugs used as well as more frequent drug use over the 2-year period relative to the intervention group. Survival analysis using logistic regression revealed that the intervention was associated with reduced odds of taking up the use of marijuana (beta = -0.3; robust SE = 0.2; P = .09; odds ratio = 0.7; 95% confidence interval, 0.5-1.0), cocaine (beta = -1.4; robust SE = 0.4; P < .001; odds ratio = 0.2; 95% confidence interval, 0.1-0.5), and other drugs (beta = -0.7; robust SE = 0.3; P = .03; odds ratio = 0.5; 95% confidence interval, 0.3-0.9) over the 24-month period.

CONCLUSION:

This study extends the evidence that brief, personality-targeted interventions can prevent the onset and escalation of substance misuse in high-risk adolescents.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00344474.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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