Probability and predictors of treatment-seeking for prescription opioid use disorders: A National Study

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Background: Prescription opioid use disorders are the second most common drug use disorder behind only cannabis use disorders. Despite this, very little is known about the help-seeking behavior among individuals with these disorders. Methods: The sample included respondents of the Wave 2 of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) with a lifetime diagnosis of prescription drug use disorders (. N=. 623). Unadjusted and adjusted hazard ratios are presented for time to first treatment-seeking by sociodemographic characteristics and comorbid psychiatric disorders. Results: The lifetime cumulative probability of treatment seeking was 42% and the median delay from prescription drug use disorder onset to first treatment was 3.83 years. Having an earlier onset of prescription opioid use disorder and a history of bipolar disorder, major depression disorder, specific phobia and cluster B personality disorders predicted shorter delays to treatment. Conclusions: Although some comorbid psychiatric disorders increase the rate of treatment-seeking and decrease delays to first-treatment contact rates of treatment-seeking for prescription drug use disorder are low, even when compared with rates of treatment for other substance use disorders. Given the high prevalence and adverse consequences of prescription drug use disorder, there is a need to improve detection and treatment of prescription opioid use disorder. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.




Blanco, C., Iza, M., Schwartz, R. P., Rafful, C., Wang, S., & Olfson, M. (2013). Probability and predictors of treatment-seeking for prescription opioid use disorders: A National Study. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 131(1–3), 143–148.

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