American Journal on Addictions 2015;24(4):336-340. [doi: 10.1111/AJAD.12190]
Karen G. Chartier, PhD (Virginia Commonwealth University), Katherine Sanchez, PhD (University of Texas, TX Node), Therese K. Killeen, PhD (Medical University of South Carolina, SC Node), Allison Burrow, LCSW (Virginia Commonwealth University), Thomas Carmody, PhD (University of Texas, TX Node), Tracy L. Greer, PhD (University of Texas, TX Node), Madhukar H. Trivedi, MD (University of Texas, TX Node).
Current U.S. population surveys indicate more general drug use and higher rates of illicit drug dependence for men than women, however studies also suggest that, for stimulant use, female users exceed males on the severity of dependence, and addiction severity at treatment entry for drug abuse has been linked to poorer outcomes in clinical samples.
This secondary analysis of a stimulant abusing or dependent residential treatment sample (N=302) participating in the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network study CTN-0037 ( Stimulant Reduction Intervention using Dosed Exercise (STRIDE)) examined gender-specific factors associated with stimulant abstinence severity.
Bivariate statistics tested gender differences in stimulant abstinence symptoms, measured by participant-reported experiences of early withdrawal. Multivariate linear regression examined gender and other predictors of stimulant abstinence symptom severity. Women compared to men reported greater stimulant abstinence symptom severity. Anxiety disorders and individual anxiety-related abstinence symptoms accounted for this difference. African American race/ethnicity was also predictive of lower stimulant abstinence severity.
Conclusions: This study identified differences between men and women on measures of stimulant use and associated disorders, finding greater stimulant abstinence symptom severity in women compared to men. This study also suggests anxiety-related withdrawal experiences as salient topics for clinicians to address in treatment to reduce abstinence symptoms and potentially the risk for relapse to stimulant use. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2015)
Keywords: Anxiety disorders | Cocaine | CTN platform/ancillary study | Exercise | Gender differences | Stimulant abuse | Women | American Journal on Addictions (journal)
Document No: 1125, PMID: 25694201, PMCID: PMC4803500.
Submitted by CTN Dissemination Librarians, 2/23/2015.