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Patterns of smoking and injecting methamphetamine and their association with health and social outcomes


McKetin, R and Sutherland, R and Peacock, A and Farrell, M and Degenhardt, L, Patterns of smoking and injecting methamphetamine and their association with health and social outcomes, Drug and Alcohol Review, 40, (7) pp. 1256-1265. ISSN 0959-5236 (2021) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

2021 The Authors. Drug and Alcohol Review published by John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd on behalf of Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative CommonsAttribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) license, ( which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.

DOI: doi:10.1111/dar.13364


Introduction: We examine how smoking and injecting methamphetamine change over time and correlate with specific health and social outcomes.

Methods: Panel data from a longitudinal cohort dependent on methamphetamine (N = 444; 891 months). Random effects regression models examined the relationship between smoking and/or injecting methamphetamine and past month outcomes (substance use, ≥daily injection, needle/syringe sharing, psychological distress, poor mental and physical health, sexual behaviour, psychotic symptoms, violent behaviour and crime). Effects were adjusted for between-group differences at baseline.

Results: At baseline, 56% of participants only injected methamphetamine in the past month, 18% only smoked and 26% both injected and smoked (concurrent injecting and smoking). Compared to injecting only, concurrent injecting and smoking was associated with more days of methamphetamine use (b = 1.3, P < 0.001; adjusted [A] b = 1.2, P < 0.001), more frequent injection [odds ratio (OR) 1.8, P = 0.013; adjusted OR (AOR) 1.6, P = 0.042], violent behaviour (OR 2.1, P = 0.001; AOR 1.8, P = 0.013] and crime (OR 3.1, P < 0.001; AOR 2.5, P < 0.001). Non-injecting related outcomes did not differ significantly for only smoking versus only injecting. There was no significant transition from injecting methamphetamine at baseline to non-injecting methamphetamine use at follow up, or from exclusively smoking methamphetamine at baseline to any methamphetamine injection at follow up.

Discussion and conclusion: Efforts are needed to address heavier methamphetamine use, more frequent drug injection and elevated violent behaviour and crime among people who concurrently smoke and inject methamphetamine.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:amphetamine, harm, injecting, methamphetamine, smoking
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Health services and systems
Research Field:Mental health services
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Substance abuse
UTAS Author:Peacock, A (Miss Amy Peacock)
ID Code:151817
Year Published:2021
Web of Science® Times Cited:5
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2022-08-05
Last Modified:2022-09-07
Downloads:4 View Download Statistics

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