Prescription drug use, health services utilization, and health problems in rural appalachian Kentucky

Carl Leukefeld, Hope Smiley Mcdonald, Allison Mateyoke-Scrivner, Heather Roberto, Robert Walker, Matthew Webster, Thomas Garrity

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Rural states like Kentucky now lead the nation in the illicit diversion of narcotic prescription drugs. In order to understand this phenomenon, we examine the currently popularly abused prescription drug OxyContin® by comparing differences in drug use, health services use, and criminality among a nontreatment group of rural Appalachian probationers who reported using OxyContin® (n = 101) with nonusers of OxyContin® (n = 194). Although OxyContin® users were younger, a number of differences emerged. OxyContin® users exhibited higher levels of use for 15 illicit drugs examined; used more detoxification services; attended more AA/NA meetings; reported more depression, anxiety, trouble concentrating, and violence; and reported more crime for 16 crimes. We discuss the implications of OxyContin® use including the possibility that it may be a marker for other illicit rural drug use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)631-643
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Drug Issues
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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