246812 Racial/Ethnic Patterns of Illicit Drug Use Disorders among Adolescents and Adults in the United States

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 1:30 PM

Pradip Muhuri , Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, SAMHSA, Rockville, MD
Using combined data from the 2002-2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), this study examines past-year illicit drug use disorders in relation to race/ethnicity among adolescents and adults and then estimates the magnitude of the relationship after adjusting for potential confounders in selected subpopulations. Results suggest three distinct patterns of racial/ethnic differences in these disorders. First, there is a shift from a low rate of past-year drug use disorders for blacks compared to whites during adolescence to relatively high rates during mid-adulthood and beyond. These findings corroborate the results of Ensminger et al's (in press) study involving the Woodlawn cohort of black individuals. Second, relative to whites, Hispanics as well as Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders have lower rates of use disorders particularly in adulthood although Asian Americans have the lowest rates at all ages. Third, from adolescence to adulthood, American Indians & Alaska Natives (AI/AN) and persons in multiple race categories (MRC) are relatively more prone to these disorders. These racial/ethnic subgroups are also more likely than whites to be not currently married or not employed full-time. The initial analysis suggests that, among those aged 26 or older, the relationship of race/ethnicity with past-year illicit drug use disorders may have been confounded with the association of marital and employment statuses with the same outcome. But, the logistic regression model that adjusted for these factors suggests that, Blacks, AI/AN, and persons in MRC (relative to whites) still have significant excess odds of past-year drug use disorders in adulthood.

Learning Areas:
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Identify which racial/ethnic subgroups are at high risk of having illicit drug use disorders and at what ages -- adolescence, early-, mid-adulthood or beyond. Describe specific socioeconomic circumstances that are likely to explain some of the racial/ethnic differences in the risk of having these disorders.

Keywords: Drug Abuse, Epidemiology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: My PhD and work at SAMHSA is related to the material I will present.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.