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Int J Addict. 1984 Dec;19(8):859-69.

The drug addict and the stigma of addiction.


Two hundred and fifty-six respondents from a small, upper-midwestern college town answered a questionnaire designed to assess their first impression images of the term "drug addict." The results indicated that the overwhelming image was of a disoriented, unhealthy, thin, low-class, male "hippie" with behavioral and skin problems who suffered from a disease. Only 11% of the responses described the condition as a crime. This study is compared with a previous, similar study of the first impression of the term "alcoholic," and suggestions are provided to explain the categorization of the conditions as disease states.

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