Crack user study finds critical need for intervention

A Brazilian investigative team, collaborating with a Simon Fraser University researcher, is citing an urgent need for targeted interventions among young crack users in cities throughout Brazil, identified as the world's biggest crack market, and further research to better address the problem.

SFU health sciences professor Benedikt Fischer and his Brazilian collaborators carried out a study of 160 young adult crack users in Rio de Janeiro and Salvador. Its findings paint a somber picture of socially disenfranchised drug users with extensive health problems and involvement in crime.

Published last month in the International Journal of Drug Policy, the study sheds light on the key characteristics of young crack users in a bid to better understand the problem and the interventions needed.

were assessed on key social, health, drug use and service use characteristics.

"Crack users in the two Brazilian sites featured extensive socio-economic marginalization and are involved in crack and poly-drug use as well as sexual , and have compromised health status," says Fischer, noting that despite the high needs, social and health service utilization remain low.

"This research confirms that crack users are among the most marginalized of drug users, and feature extensive health and social needs, yet are commonly not provided adequate services," says Fischer, who maintains a visiting professorship at the Institute of Psychiatry, Federal University of , Brazil and has collaborated extensively with the Brazilian authors involved in the study.

More information: www.ijdp.org/article/s0955-395… (13)00041-8/abstract

Related Stories

Forced treatment for crack addicts in Sao Paulo

date Jan 21, 2013

About 50 Brazilian health officials and law enforcement agents are rounding up crack addicts in the city of Sao Paulo and forcibly putting them in treatment if deemed necessary.

Shared Crack Pipes May Spread Hepatitis C Virus

date Dec 12, 2007

A new study by the University of Victoria’s Centre for Addictions Research (CARBC) suggests that the Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) could possibly be passed on between crack smokers who share pipes. As the vast majority of new ...

Brazil moves to combat 'crack epidemic'

date Dec 07, 2011

The Brazilian government on Wednesday launched a war on what it called a "crack epidemic", including medical treatment for addicts and a crackdown on trafficking, particularly in border areas.

Recommended for you

Smokers who use e-cigarettes less likely to quit

date Apr 16, 2015

The rapid increase in use of e-cigarettes has led to heated debates between opponents who question the safety of these devices and proponents who claim the battery-operated products are a useful cessation tool. A study, published ...

Evidence that synthetic drugs can cause cancer

date Apr 16, 2015

Almost weekly, a new synthetic psychoactive drug comes onto the market somewhere in Europe that can be ordered legally and easily, for example as an incense blend, via the Internet. Synthetic cannabinoids ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.