Drug Abuse History and Treatment Needs of Jail Inmates

Department of Law and Mental Health, Florida Mental Health Institute, University of South Florida, Tampa 33612-3899.
The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse (Impact Factor: 1.78). 02/1992; 18(3):355-66. DOI: 10.3109/00952999209026072
Source: PubMed


The current study evaluates the extent of prior drug use and psychosocial dysfunction related to drug use among 499 jail inmates referred to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office Substance Abuse Treatment Program. Results indicate that inmates were involved with drugs for an average of more than 7 years, and with cocaine for almost 5 years. The majority of inmates reported extremely heavy use of drugs in the month prior to the last arrest, including 83% that had used cocaine. Many drug-dependent inmates reported a shift over time from intranasal to freebase cocaine use. Half of all referrals indicated a pattern of regular use within a year of involvement with drugs. The need for lengthy, heavily structured, and intensive treatment approaches for drug-dependent jail inmates is underscored by a history of chronic cocaine and polydrug abuse, a compulsive pattern of drug use, few successful periods of voluntary abstinence, and severe disruption in vocational, social, and psychological functioning. Their history of infrequent and unsuccessful involvement in rehabilitation programs reflects a significant need for compulsory treatment following release from jail, community supervision to ensure compliance with treatment, and development of linkages between jail drug treatment programs, courts, and community treatment providers.

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    • "syndrome characterized by insomnia, restlessness, anorexia and irritability (Jones and Benowitz 1976; Jones et al. 1976; Mendelson et al. 1984; Tennant 1986; Rohr et al. 1989; Compton et al. 1990; Duffy and Milin 1996; Kouri et al. 1998). Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that many violent crimes are committed by individuals undergoing withdrawal from other drugs of abuse (Hanlon et al. 1990; National Institute of Justice 1989; Peters and Kearns 1992; Kouri et al. 1997). Because marijuana is the most widely used illicit drug in the United States (NIDA 1997) and many chronic users meet DSM-IV criteria for marijuana dependence (Budney et al. 1997), it is important to investigate whether withdrawal from chronic marijuana use is associated with increases in aggression. "
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    ABSTRACT: Even though marijuana is the most commonly abused illicit drug in the United States, it is still undetermined whether withdrawal after chronic use results in changes in aggressive behavior in humans. The present study investigated the pattern and duration of changes in aggressive behavior in long-term marijuana users during a 28-day abstinence period verified by daily urines. Chronic marijuana users who had smoked marijuana on at least 5000 occasions (the equivalent of smoking daily for approximately 14 years) and who were smoking regularly when recruited were studied on days 0 (when they were still smoking), 1 (during acute withdrawal), 3, 7 and 28 of a 28-day detoxification period. Aggressive behavior was measured using the Point Subtraction Aggression Paradigm. Compared to controls and to the pre-withdrawal data, chronic marijuana users displayed more aggressive behavior on days 3 and 7 of marijuana abstinence. These increases in aggressive responding returned to pre-withdrawal levels after 28 days and were paralleled by small, non-significant changes in depression and anxiety scores. Our findings confirm previous reports of an abstinence syndrome associated with chronic marijuana use and suggest that aggressive behavior should be an additional component of this syndrome.
    Psychopharmacology 05/1999; 143(3):302-8. DOI:10.1007/s002130050951 · 3.88 Impact Factor
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