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Tobacco and e-cigarette use amongst illicit drug users in Australia


Sutherland, R and Sindicich, N and Entwhistle, G and Whittaker, E and Peacock, A and Matthews, A and Bruno, R and Alati, R and Burns, L, Tobacco and e-cigarette use amongst illicit drug users in Australia, Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 159 pp. 35-41. ISSN 0376-8716 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2015.10.035


Objective: To examine the rates and patterns of tobacco and e-cigarette use amongst two samples of illicit drug users in Australia.

Method: Data were obtained from the 2015 Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS) and the 2015 Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System (EDRS). These studies comprised cross-sectional samples of 888 people who inject drugs (PWID) and 763 regular psychostimulant users (RPU).

Results: Tobacco was consumed by the majority of both samples, however, use in the 6 months preceding interview was significantly higher amongst PWID (92.2%) than RPU (82.4% [OR 2.53 95% CI 1.86-3.44]). Inversely, PWID were less likely to have a history of e-cigarette use: 31.5% of PWID reported lifetime use of e-cigarettes (vs. 57.0% of RPU [OR 0.35 95% CI 0.28-0.42]) and 18.1% reported use in the 6 months preceding interview (vs. 33.7% of RPU [OR 0.44 95% CI 0.35-0.55]). PWID were more than three times as likely than RPU to report using e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation tool (OR 3.09 95% CI 2.03-4.71), but were less likely to use e-liquids that contained nicotine (OR 0.52 95% CI 0.32-0.83). Higher levels of poly drug use, daily tobacco use, recent use of synthetic cannabinoids and employment status were found to be significantly associated with e-cigarette use.

Conclusion: The use of e-cigarettes was relatively common amongst Australian samples of PWID and RPU. Whilst the majority of PWID reported using e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation tool, it appears that RPU are using them for experimental or recreational purposes.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:e-cigarettes, electronic cigarettes, ENDS, tobacco, smoking, illicit drugs
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Other psychology
Research Field:Other psychology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Peacock, A (Miss Amy Peacock)
UTAS Author:Matthews, A (Dr Allison Matthews)
UTAS Author:Bruno, R (Associate Professor Raimondo Bruno)
ID Code:106553
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:15
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2016-02-13
Last Modified:2018-03-21

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