Crystalline methamphetamine use and methamphetamine-related harms in Australia

Degenhardt, Louisa, Sara, Grant, McKetin, Rebecca, Roxburgh, Amanda, Dobbins, Timothy, Farrell, Michael, Burns, Lucinda and Hall, Wayne D. (2017) Crystalline methamphetamine use and methamphetamine-related harms in Australia. Drug and Alcohol Review, 36 2: 160-170. doi:10.1111/dar.12426

Author Degenhardt, Louisa
Sara, Grant
McKetin, Rebecca
Roxburgh, Amanda
Dobbins, Timothy
Farrell, Michael
Burns, Lucinda
Hall, Wayne D.
Title Crystalline methamphetamine use and methamphetamine-related harms in Australia
Journal name Drug and Alcohol Review   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1465-3362
Publication date 2017-03-01
Year available 2016
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/dar.12426
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 36
Issue 2
Start page 160
End page 170
Total pages 11
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2018
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Introduction and Aims: Concerns about crystal methamphetamine use and harm have increased in multiple countries. This paper describes how changes in the availability and use of crystal methamphetamine have impacted on methamphetamine-related harms in Australia.

Design and Methods: Data on methamphetamine use were obtained from population-level surveys, health service data and surveys of drug use among sentinel groups of ecstasy users and people who inject drugs. Data were obtained on seizures, arrests, clandestine laboratory detections, hospital separations, mental health unit admissions, drug telephone helpline calls and drug treatment episodes. Segmented linear regression models were fitted to identify changes in these series using log-transformed data where appropriate.

Results: The availability of crystal methamphetamine has increased as evidenced by increased laboratory detections, domestic seizures and purity of the seized drug. Population surveys do not report an increase in the number of people who used at least once in the past year. However, more users report using crystal methamphetamine rather than lower-purity powder methamphetamine and more regular use. Indicators of methamphetamine-related harms have increased in parallel with this change. Amphetamine-related helpline calls, drug treatment, arrests and hospital admissions for amphetamine disorders and psychosis all peaked in the mid-2000s, declined for several years and have increased steeply since 2010. Discussion and

Conclusions: The increased availability and use of crystal methamphetamine have been associated with increased regular use and harms. Treatment is required for those experiencing problems and the capacity of health services to provide care needs to be enhanced.
Keyword Amphetamine-type stimulants
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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