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The prevalence and correlates of neurological illness and traumatic brain injury (TBI) among Australian frequent drug users

Citation

Scott, L and Bruno, RB and Burns, L and Van Buskirk, J and Alati, R and Matthews, AJ, The prevalence and correlates of neurological illness and traumatic brain injury (TBI) among Australian frequent drug users, Dug and Alochol Review, 18-21 November 2012, Melbourne, Victoria, pp. 50. ISSN 0959-5236 (2012) [Conference Extract]


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Abstract

Issue: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in developed countries with a peak incidence among young adults and elderly people [1]. TBI can result in long-term impairments in cognition, physical and psychological wellbeing, social and occupational outcomes [2]. Cognitive, emotional and functional impairments associated with drug use could potentially compound those associated with TBI. The aim of this paper was to investigate the prevalence and correlates of neurological illness and TBI among regular psychostimulant users and people who inject drugs. Approach: Participants were regular psychostimulant users and people who inject drugs who participated in the Ecstasy and Related Drug Reporting System and Illicit Drug Reporting System in 2012. Inclusion criteria required at least monthly psychostimulant or injecting drug use in the preceding six months. Approximately 100 participants in each group were interviewed in each Australian jurisdiction. Participants were assessed using a neurological history module examining epilepsy, stroke, hypoxic brain damage and TBI. Key Findings: The prevalence and severity of TBI in these two different groups of drug users are compared with general population data. Correlates of TBI are examined including demographics, drug use, mental health and risky behaviours. The temporal relationship between head injury and onset of drug use is also explored. Implications and Conclusions: Findings suggest that those reporting co-occurrence of drug use and neurological insult may experience elevated risk of adverse outcomes. Implications for patient care and service provision are addressed. Further investigation of the combined impact of drug use and TBI on cognitive functioning is recommended.

Item Details

Item Type:Conference Extract
Keywords:drug
Research Division:Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Research Group:Psychology
Research Field:Biological Psychology (Neuropsychology, Psychopharmacology, Physiological Psychology)
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health)
Objective Field:Substance Abuse
Author:Bruno, RB (Associate Professor Raimondo Bruno)
Author:Matthews, AJ (Dr Allison Matthews)
ID Code:83693
Year Published:2012
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2013-03-20
Last Modified:2013-03-20
Downloads:0

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