Department of Family Therapy
Drug and Alcohol Dependence
Background: Benzodiazepines (BZs) are among the most frequently prescribed drugs with the potential for abuse. Young adults ages 18–29 report the highest rates of BZ misuse in the United States. The majority of club drug users are also in this age group, and BZ misuse is prevalent in the nightclub scene. BZ dependence, however, is not well documented. This paper examines BZ dependence and its correlates among multidrug users in South Florida's nightclub scene.
Methods: Data were drawn from structured interviews with men and women (N = 521) who reported regular attendance at large dance clubs and recent use of both club drugs and BZs.
Results: Prevalences of BZ-related problems were 7.9% for BZ dependence, 22.6% BZ abuse, and 25% BZ abuse and/or dependence. In bivariate logistic regression models, heavy cocaine use (OR 2.27; 95% CI 1.18, 4.38), severe mental distress (OR 2.63; 95% CI 1.33, 5.21), and childhood victimization history (OR 2.43; 95% CI 1.10, 5.38) were associated with BZ dependence. Heavy cocaine use (OR 2.14; 95% CI 1.10, 4.18) and severe mental distress (OR 2.16; 95% CI 1.07, 4.37) survived as predictors in the multivariate model.
Discussion: BZ misuse is widespread among multidrug users in the club scene, who also exhibit high levels of other health and social problems. BZ dependence appears to be more prevalent in this sample than in other populations described in the literature. Recommendations for intervention and additional research are described.
Kurtz, S. P., Surratt, H. L., Levi-Minzi, M. A., & Mooss, A. (2011). Benzodiazepine Dependence among Multidrug Users in the Club Scene. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 119 (1-2), 99-105. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2011.05.036