ERIC Number: ED232093
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982
Reference Count: 0
Drug Taking among the Elderly. Treatment Research Report.
Stephens, Richard C.; And Others
Understanding the misuse of drugs by the elderly has become an area of increasing concern to the drug abuse field. As part of a larger exploration of drug use and health issues among the elderly, a random sample of Houston's noninstitutionalized elderly population (N=1,101), aged 55 and older, were interviewed to determine the extent of their drug use and misuse. From mid-1979 through early 1980, participants completed telephone interviews gathering data on general health issues, morale, and activity levels. In-depth home interviews were conducted which focused on current use of all prescription drugs, and on respondents' total history of psychoactive drug use. Analyses of results showed that 17.6% of those interviewed were using prescribed psychotropic drugs; 6.9% reported deviating from their prescriptions, with 86.8% of these taking less than the prescribed amount. Fewer than 2% reported using any illicit drug in their lifetime. In addition, 60% reported that they had not drunk any alcoholic beverages in the month preceeding the interview, although 6.6% reported consuming 5 or more drinks on those occassions when they did drink. The results coincide with earlier findings that portray the elderly as responsible consumers of psychoactive substances. (MCF)
Descriptors: Alcoholic Beverages, Drug Abuse, Drug Use, Interviews, Older Adults, Sedatives, Smoking, Tobacco
Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402.
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. on Drug Abuse (DHHS/PHS), Rockville, MD. Div. of Prevention and Treatment Development.
Authoring Institution: Houston Univ., TX.