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Trends in cannabis or cocaine-related dependence and alcohol/drug treatment in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay

Mauro, Pia M; Gutkind, Sarah; Rivera-Aguirre, Ariadne; Gary, Dahsan; Cerda, Magdalena; Santos, Erica Chavez; Castillo-Carniglia, Alvaro; Martins, Silvia S
BACKGROUND:In the context of changing cannabis and other drug policy and regulation, concerns may arise regarding drug treatment access and use. We assessed cannabis/cocaine-related dependence and treatment in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay. METHODS:Nationally representative cross-sectional household surveys of people ages 15-64 in Argentina (4 surveys, 2006-2017), Chile (7 surveys, 2006-2018), and Uruguay (4 surveys, 2006-2018) were harmonized. We estimated weighted prevalences of cannabis or cocaine-related (cocaine or cocaine paste) dependence, based on meeting 3+ past-year ICD-10 dependence criteria. We estimated weighted prevalences of past-year alcohol/drug treatment use (Argentina, Chile) or use/seeking (Uruguay) among people with past-year cannabis/cocaine-related dependence. We tested model-based prevalence trends over time and described individual-level treatment correlates by country. RESULTS:Cannabis/cocaine dependence prevalence increased in the region starting in 2010-2011, driven by cannabis dependence. Adjusted cannabis dependence prevalence increased from 0.7% in 2010 to 1.5% in 2017 in Argentina (aPD=0.8, 95% CI= 0.3, 1.2), from 0.8% in 2010 to 2.8% in 2018 in Chile (aPD=2.0, 95% CI= 1.4, 2.6), and from 1.4% in 2011 to 2.4% in 2018 in Uruguay (aPD=0.9, 95% CI= 0.2, 1.6). Cocaine-related dependence increased in Uruguay, decreased in Argentina, and remained stable in Chile. Among people with past-year cannabis/cocaine dependence, average alcohol/drug treatment use prevalence was 15.3% in Argentina and 6.0% in Chile, while treatment use/seeking was 14.7% in Uruguay. Alcohol/drug treatment prevalence was lower among people with cannabis dependence than cocaine-related dependence. Treatment correlates included older ages in all countries and male sex in Argentina only. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Alcohol/drug treatment use among people with cannabis/cocaine-related dependence remained low, signaling an ongoing treatment gap in the context of growing cannabis dependence prevalence in the region. Additional resources may be needed to increase treatment access and uptake. Future studies should assess contributors of low treatment use, including perceived need, stigma, and service availability.
PMID: 35939947
ISSN: 1873-4758
CID: 5286592

Frequency of adolescent cannabis smoking and vaping in the United States: Trends, disparities and concurrent substance use, 2017-19

Keyes, Katherine M; Kreski, Noah T; Ankrum, Hadley; Cerdá, Magdalena; Chen, Qixuan; Hasin, Deborah S; Martins, Silvia S; Olfson, Mark; Miech, Richard
AIM/OBJECTIVE:To quantify the trends in frequent and occasional cannabis vaping, demographic differences and concurrent nicotine and alcohol use. DESIGN/METHODS:Observational study. Survey-weighted multinomial logistic regression models assessed trends and disparities in past 30-day cannabis use. Trends were assessed overall and by sex, race/ethnicity, parental education and urbanicity. Multinomial logistic regression models also estimated associations of cannabis use (none, use without vaping, use with vaping) with past 2-week binge drinking and past 30-day nicotine/tobacco use. SETTING/METHODS:United States, 2017-19. PARTICIPANTS/METHODS:Participants in the national Monitoring the Future (n = 51 052) survey. MEASUREMENTS/METHODS:Past 30-day frequent cannabis use (six or more times/30 days) and past 30-day occasional use (one to five times/30 days), with and without vaping. FINDINGS/RESULTS:Past 30-day frequent cannabis use with vaping and occasional use with vaping rose from 2017 to 2019. Past 30-day frequent and occasional cannabis use without vaping declined. Certain groups, such as Hispanic/Latino or lower socio-economic status adolescents, experienced particularly notable increases in frequent cannabis use with vaping (e.g. prevalence among Hispanic/Latino adolescents). Adolescents who reported smoking and vaping nicotine, and 10+ occasions of binge drinking, were 42.28 [95% confidence interval (CI) = 33.14-53.93] and 10.09 (95% CI = 4.51-22.53) times more likely to report past 30-day cannabis use with vaping, respectively, compared with no use. DISCUSSION/CONCLUSIONS:Cannabis use without vaping appears to be declining among adolescents in the United States, while cannabis use with vaping is accelerating; frequent cannabis vaping is especially increasing, with consistent increases across almost all adolescent demographic groups. Cannabis use among US adolescents remains highly associated with other substance use.
PMID: 35588004
ISSN: 1360-0443
CID: 5229432

Cannabis legalization and traffic injuries: exploring the role of supply mechanisms

Kilmer, Beau; Rivera-Aguirre, Ariadne; Queirolo, Rosario; Ramirez, Jessica; Cerdá, Magdalena
BACKGROUND AND AIM/OBJECTIVE:In Uruguay, residents age 18 and older seeking legal cannabis must register with the government and choose one of three supply mechanisms: self-cultivation, non-profit cannabis clubs or pharmacies. This is the first paper to measure the association between type of legal cannabis supply mechanism and traffic crashes involving injuries. DESIGN/METHODS:Ecological study using ordinary least squares regression to examine how department-level variation in registrations (overall and by type) is associated with traffic crashes involving injuries. SETTING/METHODS:Uruguay. CASES/METHODS:532 department-quarters. MEASUREMENTS/METHODS:Quarterly cannabis registration counts at the department level and incident-level traffic crash data were obtained from government agencies. The analyses controlled for department-level economic and demographic characteristics and, as a robustness check, we included traffic violations involving alcohol for departments reporting this information. Department-level data on crashes, registrations and alcohol violations were denominated by the number of residents ages 18 and older. FINDINGS/RESULTS:From 2013 to 2019, the average number of registrations at the department-quarter level per 10 000 residents age 18 and older for self-cultivation, club membership and pharmacy purchasing were 17.7 (SD = 16.8), 3.6 (SD = 8.6), and 25.1 (SD = 50.4), respectively. In our multivariate regression analyses, we did not find a statistically significant association between the total number of registrations and traffic crashes with injuries (β = -0.007; P = 0.398; 95% CI = -0.023, 0.01). Analyses focused on the specific supply mechanisms found a consistent, positive and statistically significant association between the number of individuals registered as self-cultivators and the number of traffic crashes with injuries (β = 0.194; P = 0.008; 95% CI = 0.058, 0.329). Associations for other supply mechanisms were inconsistent across the various model specifications. CONCLUSIONS:In Uruguay, the number of people allowed to self-cultivate cannabis is positively associated with traffic crashes involving injuries. Individual-level analyses are needed to assess better the factors underlying this association.
PMID: 35129240
ISSN: 1360-0443
CID: 5190752

Trends in Prescriptions for Non-opioid Pain Medications among U.S. Adults with Moderate or Severe Pain, 2014-2018

Gorfinkel, Lauren R; Hasin, Deborah; Saxon, Andrew J; Wall, Melanie; Martins, Silvia S; Cerdá, Magdalena; Keyes, Katherine; Fink, David S; Keyhani, Salomeh; Maynard, Charles C; Olfson, Mark
As opioid prescribing has declined, it is unclear how the landscape of prescription pain treatment across the US has changed. We used nationally-representative data from the Medical Expenditure Health Survey, 2014-2018 to examine trends in prescriptions for opioid and non-opioid pain medications, including acetaminophen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), gabapentinoids, and antidepressants among US adults with self-reported pain. Overall, from 2014-2018, the percentage of participants receiving a prescription for opioids declined, (38.8% vs. 32.8%), remained stable for NSAIDs (26.8% vs. 27.7%), and increased for acetaminophen (1.6% vs. 2.3%), antidepressants (9.6% vs. 12.0%) and gabapentinoids (13.2% vs. 19.0%). In this period, the adjusted odds of receiving an opioid prescription decreased (aOR=0.93, 95% CI=0.90-0.96), while the adjusted odds of receiving antidepressant, gabapentinoid and acetaminophen prescriptions increased (antidepressants: aOR=1.08, 95% CI=1.03-1.13 gabapentinoids: aOR=1.11, 95% CI=1.06-1.17; acetaminophen: aOR=1.10, 95% CI: 1.02-1.20). Secondary analyses stratifiying within the 2014-2016 and 2016-2018 periods revealed particular increases in prescriptions for gabapentinoids (aOR=1.13, 95% CI=1.05-1.21) and antidepressants (aOR=1.23, 95% CI=1.12-1.35) since 2016.
PMID: 35143969
ISSN: 1528-8447
CID: 5156872

Opportunities for opioid overdose prediction: building a population health approach

Allen, Bennett; Cerdá, Magdalena
PMID: 35623796
ISSN: 2589-7500
CID: 5229442

Age, period, and cohort effects of internalizing symptoms among US students and the influence of self-reported frequency of ≥ 7 hours sleep attainment: Results from the Monitoring the Future Survey 1991-2019

Kaur, Navdep; Hamilton, Ava D; Chen, Qixuan; Hasin, Deborah; Cerda, Magdalena; Martins, Silvia S; Keyes, Katherine M
Adolescent internalizing symptoms have increased since 2010, while adequate sleep has declined for several decades. It remains unclear how self-reported sleep attainment has impacted internalizing symptoms trends. Using 1991-2019 MTF data (N~390,000), we estimate age-period-cohort effects in adolescent internalizing symptoms (loneliness, self-esteem, self-derogation, depressive affect) and the association with yearly prevalence of a survey-assessed, self-reported measure of ≥ 7 hours sleep attainment. We focus our main analysis on loneliness and use median odds ratios (MORs), measures of variance in loneliness associated with period differences. We observed limited signals for cohort effects and modeled only period effects. Loneliness increased by 0.83% per year; adolescents in 2019 had 0.68 (95% CI: 0.49, 0.87) increased log-odds of loneliness compared with the mean, consistent by race/ethnicity and parental education. Girls experienced steeper increases than boys (p<0.0001). The period effect MOR for loneliness was 1.16 (variance=0.09; 95% CI: 0.06, 0.17) before adjusting for self-reported frequency of ≥ 7 hours sleep vs. 1.07 (variance=0.02; 95% CI: 0.01, 0.03) after adjusting. Adolescents across cohorts are experiencing worsening internalizing symptoms. Self-reported frequency of <7 hours sleep partially explains increases in loneliness, indicating the need for feasibility trials to study the effect of increasing sleep attainment on internalizing symptoms.
PMID: 35048117
ISSN: 1476-6256
CID: 5131642

Does recreational cannabis legalization change cannabis use patterns? Evidence from secondary school students in Uruguay

Rivera-Aguirre, Ariadne; Castillo-Carniglia, Alvaro; Laqueur, Hannah S; Rudolph, Kara E; Martins, Silva S; Ramírez, Jessica; Queirolo, Rosario; Cerdá, Magdalena
BACKGROUND AND AIMS/OBJECTIVE:In 2013, Uruguay became the first country to legalize and regulate the production and distribution of cannabis for recreational use. We measured whether Uruguay's non-commercial model of recreational cannabis legalization was associated with changes in the prevalence of risky and frequent cannabis use among secondary school students. DESIGN/METHODS:We used data from repeated cross-sectional surveys of secondary students in Uruguay and Chile (2007-2018). Using a difference-in-difference approach, we evaluated changes in the prevalence of past-year, past-month, any risky and frequent cannabis use following enactment (2014) and implementation (2016) of cannabis legalization among the full sample of secondary students and among students who reported past-year/month use. We examined changes separately for students aged 12-17, and students for whom cannabis became legally accessible, ages 18-21. SETTING/METHODS:Uruguay and Chile (2007-2018). PARTICIPANTS/METHODS:grade (n=204,730). MEASUREMENTS/METHODS:Past-year and past-month cannabis use; any risky cannabis use measured with the Cannabis Abuse Screening Test (CAST); and frequent cannabis use (10+ days in the past-month). FINDINGS/RESULTS:We found a decrease in past-year and past-month use following enactment or implementation. Among students ages 18-21, post-enactment, we observed a transitory increase in 2014 that decreased thereafter for: any risky use among those who reported past-year use (prevalence difference [PD]=13.5%; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.0, 24.9), frequent use in the full sample (PD=4.5%; 95%CI: 1.0, 8.1), and frequent use among those who reported past-month use (PD=16.8%; 95%CI: 1.9, 31.8). CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:The legalization of recreational cannabis in Uruguay was not associated with overall increases in either past-year/past-month cannabis use or with multi-year changes in any risky and frequent cannabis use among young people.
PMID: 35491741
ISSN: 1360-0443
CID: 5205142

Substance use disorders and COVID-19: An analysis of nation-wide Veterans Health Administration electronic health records

Hasin, Deborah S; Fink, David S; Olfson, Mark; Saxon, Andrew J; Malte, Carol; Keyes, Katherine M; Gradus, Jaimie L; Cerdá, Magdalena; Maynard, Charles C; Keyhani, Salomeh; Martins, Silvia S; Livne, Ofir; Mannes, Zachary L; Sherman, Scott E; Wall, Melanie M
BACKGROUND:Substance use disorders (SUD) elevate the risk for COVID-19 hospitalization, but studies are inconsistent on the relationship of SUD to COVID-19 mortality. METHODS:Veterans Health Administration (VHA) patients treated in 2019 and evaluated in 2020 for COVID-19 (n=5,556,315), of whom 62,303 (1.1%) tested positive for COVID-19 (COVID-19+). Outcomes were COVID-19+ by 11/01/20, hospitalization, ICU admission, or death within 60 days of a positive test. Main predictors were any ICD-10-CM SUDs, with substance-specific SUDs (cannabis, cocaine, opioid, stimulant, sedative) explored individually. Logistic regression produced unadjusted and covariate-adjusted odds ratios (OR; aOR). RESULTS:Among COVID-19+ patients, 19.25% were hospitalized, 7.71% admitted to ICU, and 5.84% died. In unadjusted models, any SUD and all substance-specific SUDs except cannabis use disorder were associated with COVID-19+(ORs=1.06-1.85); adjusted models produced similar results. Any SUD and all substance-specific SUDs were associated with hospitalization (aORs: 1.24-1.91). Any SUD, cocaine and opioid disorder were associated with ICU admission in unadjusted but not adjusted models. Any SUD, cannabis, cocaine, and stimulant disorders were inversely associated with mortality in unadjusted models (OR=0.27-0.46). After adjustment, associations with mortality were no longer significant. In ad hoc analyses, adjusted odds of mortality were lower among the 49.9% of COVID-19+ patients with SUD who had SUD treatment in 2019, but not among those without such treatment. CONCLUSIONS:In VHA patients, SUDs are associated with COVID-19 hospitalization but not COVID-19 mortality. SUD treatment may provide closer monitoring of care, ensuring that these patients received needed medical attention, enabling them to ultimately survive serious illness.
PMCID:8891118
PMID: 35279457
ISSN: 1879-0046
CID: 5205102

National Trends and Disparities in Bullying and Suicidal Behavior Across Demographic Subgroups of US Adolescents

Kreski, Noah T; Chen, Qixuan; Olfson, Mark; Cerdá, Magdalena; Martins, Silvia S; Mauro, Pia M; Hasin, Deborah S; Keyes, Katherine M
OBJECTIVE:Suicidal behavior and bullying victimization are important indicators of adolescent psychological distress, and are patterned by sex, race/ethnicity and sexual identity. This study aimed to estimate trends and disparities in these factors along key demographics. METHOD/METHODS:Youth Risk Behavior Survey data (2015-2019, N=44,066) were collected biennially through national cross-sectional surveys of US school-attending adolescents. Survey-weighted logistic regressions examined disparities in past-year bullying and suicidal behavior, overall and by demographics. RESULTS:Bullying in 2019 was highest for female (vs. male) students (OR=1.82, 95% CI:[1.62, 2.06]), American Indian/Alaskan Native (vs White) students (OR= 1.48, [0.91, 2.41], p>.05), and gay/lesbian (vs heterosexual) students (OR= 2.81, [2.07, 3.81]). Suicidal behavior disparities affected similar groups. There was minimal evidence for shifts in disparities since 2015, with the exception of bullying for gay/lesbian adolescents. The prevalence of bullying victimization among gay and lesbian adolescents went from 31.6% to 44.5% between 2015 and 2019, surpassing the bisexual and "Not Sure" groups to be the sexual identity group with the highest rate of bullying victimization. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Interventions that operate on multiple structural levels and empower marginalized youth are needed.
PMID: 35489630
ISSN: 1527-5418
CID: 5205132

Cycles of Chronic Opioid Therapy Following Mandatory Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Legislation: A Retrospective Cohort Study

Allen, Bennett; Jent, Victoria A; Cerdá, Magdalena
BACKGROUND:Mandates for prescriber use of prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs), databases tracking controlled substance prescriptions, are associated with reduced opioid analgesic (OA) prescribing but may contribute to care discontinuity and chronic opioid therapy (COT) cycling, or multiple initiations and terminations. OBJECTIVE:To estimate risks of COT cycling in New York City (NYC) due to the New York State (NYS) PDMP mandate, compared to risks in neighboring New Jersey (NJ) counties. DESIGN/METHODS:We estimated cycling risk using Prentice, Williams, and Peterson gap-time models adjusted for age, sex, OA dose, payment type, and county population density, using a life-table difference-in-differences design. Failure time was duration between cycles. In a subgroup analysis, we estimated risk among patients receiving high-dose prescriptions. Sensitivity analyses tested robustness to cycle volume considering only first cycles using Cox proportional hazard models. PARTICIPANTS/METHODS:The cohort included 7604 patients dispensed 12,695 prescriptions. INTERVENTIONS/METHODS:The exposure was the August 2013 enactment of the NYS PDMP prescriber use mandate. MAIN MEASURES/METHODS:We used monthly, patient-level data on OA prescriptions dispensed in NYC and NJ between August 2011 and July 2015. We defined COT as three sequential months of prescriptions, permitting 1-month gaps. We defined recurrence as re-initiation of COT after at least 2 months without prescriptions. The exposure was enactment of the PDMP mandate in NYC; NJ was unexposed. KEY RESULTS/RESULTS:Enactment of the NYS PDMP mandate was associated with an adjusted hazard ratio (HR) for cycling of 1.01 (95% CI, 0.94-1.08) in NYC. For high-dose prescriptions, the risk was 1.16 (95% CI, 1.01-1.34). Sensitivity analyses estimated an overall risk of 1.01 (95% CI, 0.94-1.11) and high-dose risk of 1.09 (95% CI, 0.91-1.31). CONCLUSIONS:The PDMP mandate had no overall effect on COT cycling in NYC but increased cycling risk among patients receiving high-dose opioid prescriptions by 16%, highlighting care discontinuity.
PMID: 35411535
ISSN: 1525-1497
CID: 5205122