Extent of illicit drug use and dependence, and their contribution to the global burden of disease

Degenhardt, Louisa and Hall, Wayne (2012) Extent of illicit drug use and dependence, and their contribution to the global burden of disease. Lancet, 379 9810: 55-70. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(11)61138-0


Author Degenhardt, Louisa
Hall, Wayne
Title Extent of illicit drug use and dependence, and their contribution to the global burden of disease
Journal name Lancet   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0140-6736
1474-547X
Publication date 2012-01-07
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/S0140-6736(11)61138-0
Volume 379
Issue 9810
Start page 55
End page 70
Total pages 16
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher The Lancet Publishing Group
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Abstract This paper summarises data for the prevalence, correlates, and probable adverse health consequences of problem use of amphetamines, cannabis, cocaine, and opioids. We discuss findings from systematic reviews of the prevalence of illicitdrug use and dependence, remission from dependence, and mortality in illicitdrug users, and evidence for acute and chronic effects of illicitdrug use. We outline the regional and global distribution of use and estimated health burden from illicitdrugs. These distributions are likely to be underestimates because they have not included all adverse outcomes of drug use and exclude those of cannabis—the mostly widely used illicitdrug. In high-income countries, illicitdrug use contributes less to the burden of disease than does tobacco but a substantial proportion of that due to alcohol. The major adverse health effects of cannabis use are dependence and probably psychotic disorders and other mental disorders. The health-related harms of cannabis use differ from those of amphetamine, cocaine, and opioid use, in that cannabis contributes little to mortality. Intelligent policy responses to drug problems need better data for the prevalence of different types of illicitdrug use and the harms that their use causes globally. This need is especially urgent in high-income countries with substantial rates of illicitdrug use and in low-income and middle-income countries close to illicitdrug production areas.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences -- Publications
UQ Centre for Clinical Research Publications
Official 2013 Collection
 
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