Determinants of seeking treatment for cocaine abuse: A case-control study

Raimondo Maria Pavarin, Dario Consonni, Domenico Berardi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The objective of this study, which targeted long-term socially integrated cocaine users (in powder form, no heroin), was to analyze potential determinants of request for treatment for primary cocaine abuse. Two hundred and twenty-three cases (users who sought treatment for primary cocaine abuse) and 223 controls (users who did not seek treatment) were interviewed in Italy. A semistructured interview was created. Conditional logistic regression models were used. Cases had begun consuming illicit substances later, started using cocaine quicker, had high-risk drinking habits, had more intense recent use of cocaine, and used alone and at work. Some of the motivations of use that characterize subjects who seek treatment (to experience a 'high', disinhibition, avoidance, and to feel more confident) seem specifically to obtain immediate gratification, without concern for future consequences. Variability in cocaine abusers seeking treatment has been a long-recognized feature of this population and the results show that the appropriate target population (cocaine users experiencing problems and using more frequently) is reached by treatment services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-67
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Addiction Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2013


  • Cocaine
  • Drug use motivation
  • Treatment seeking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Health(social science)


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