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Prevalence and Predictors of Club Drug Use among Club-Going Young Adults in New York City

Abstract

“Club drugs” encompass a diverse range of substances. Although efforts have been made to determine the extent of club drug use among the general population, it is equally important to assess patterns of use among key target populations from which drug trends typically diffuse. This paper describes the results of a survey focused upon club drug use among club-going young adults in NYC. Time-space sampling generated a sample of 1,914 club-going young adults (ages 18–29) who provided data on their use of six key club drugs: ecstasy, ketamine, cocaine, methamphetamine, GHB, and LSD, as well as data on their gender, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, and other demographic variables. Club-going young adults report drug use at high rates—70% report lifetime illicit drug use and 22% report recent club drug use. Rates of club drug use differ by gender, sexual orientation and race/ethnicity. Male gender is predictive of ketamine, GHB, and methamphetamine use, while female gender is predictive of cocaine use. Gay/bisexual orientation and White race are predictive of the use of several club drugs. Greater health promotion efforts are warranted among this population. Intervention programs and campaigns should tailor specific drug messages to differentially target various segments of dance club patrons.

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Acknowledgements

The Club Drugs and Health Project was supported by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (R01-DA014925-02, Jeffrey T. Parsons, Principal Investigator). The authors recognize the contributions of the Club Drug and Health Project team—Anthony Bamonte, Lorelei Bonet, Justin Brown, Jessica Colon, Lauren DiMaria, Charles Edwards, Armando Fuentes, Christian Grov, Juline Koken, Julia Tomassilli, and Jon Weiser—as well as Jose Nanin. We thank Moira O'Brien for her continued support of the project. Thanks to David Bimbi, Rich Carpiano, and Joe Severino for helpful conversations about statistical analysis.

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Correspondence to Jeffrey T. Parsons PhD.

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Kelly, B.C., Parsons, J.T. & Wells, B.E. Prevalence and Predictors of Club Drug Use among Club-Going Young Adults in New York City. JURH 83, 884 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11524-006-9057-2

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Keywords

  • Club drugs
  • Cocaine
  • Crystal Meth
  • Ecstasy
  • GBH
  • Ketamine
  • LSD