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September 1991 (Volume 69)
Denise B. Kandel
Milbank Memorial Fund
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This review of the epidemiology of drug use and drug dependence/abuse describes the overall current pattern of use of mood-changing legal and illegal drugs based on the most recently available data, variations in drug use among subgroups in the population, and trends in drug use over time. This is the first systematic attempt to integrate data on patterns of use with data on drug dependence/abuse. In the course of the analysis an effort is made to account for two paradoxes: blacks report the lowest rate of drug use in general population studies, yet constitute the largest category of treated cases or drug-related casualties. Although prevalence of cocaine use in the general population decreased, beginning in 1986, morbidity and mortality related to cocaine increased sharply in 1990.
Author(s): Denise B. Kandel
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Volume 69, Issue 3 (pages 365–414) Published in 1991
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The Milbank Quarterly’s multidisciplinary approach and commitment to applying the best empirical research to practical policymaking offers in-depth assessments of the social, economic, historical, legal, and ethical dimensions of health and health care policy.