Background: Over the past decade, availability and use of novel psychoactive substances such as synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonists (SCRA) have proliferated globally. However, the prevalence of SCRAs use remains uncertain, as does the degree to which individuals reporting SCRA use prefer SCRA to other drugs. Methods: In April 2017, a total of 500 anonymous surveys were completed by clients enrolled in a residential drug recovery program. Chi-square and t tests were used to examine significant differences between those who had ever used SCRA and those who had not. Logistic regression analysis was conducted in order to determine which other substances used within the past 12 months were significantly associated with past-12-month SCRA use. Results: About 69% (68.4%) of clients reported lifetime SCRA use. Those reporting SCRA use were predominantly younger ((Formula presented.) = 32.5 vs. 40.7, P <.001), single (60.3% vs. 48.1%, P =.011), and white (87.1% vs. 77.7%, P =.008) and were more likely to have experienced past-12-month homelessness (6.5% vs. 3.2%, P =.004). This group had higher rates of probation/parole involvement (79.2% vs. 61.8%, P <.001) and incarceration (91.8% vs. 79.6%, P <.001). Individuals reporting SCRA use also showed extensive substance use histories and favored heroin, opioids, and amphetamines compared with SCRA. Only 5.2% of the SCRA-using group stated that SCRA was a preferred substance, and only 11.8% reported that they would try SCRA again. E-cigarettes (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 1.88), traditional cannabis (AOR = 3.87), amphetamines (AOR = 2.20), and synthetic cathinones (AOR = 3.51) were significantly associated with past-12-month SCRA use. Motivations for use included circumnavigating drug screens and peer influence. Approximately half of those who tried SCRA reported adverse effects associated with use. Conclusions: Prevalence of SCRA use among individuals with a history of substance misuse and criminal justice system involvement is high; however, SCRA are not indicated as a preferred drug.
|Number of pages||10|
|State||Published - Apr 3 2019|
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2018, © 2018 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
- drug monitoring
- emerging drugs
- novel psychoactive substances
- synthetic marijuana
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Psychiatry and Mental health