Research News Roundup: May 13, 2021

    The role of the family in alcohol use disorder recovery for adults

    Journal: Alcohol Research: Current Reviews, 2021, doi:10.35946/arcr.v41.1.06

    Authors: Barbara S. McCrady & Julianne C. Flanagan

    Abstract: Alcohol use disorder (AUD) and family functioning are inextricably bound, and families are impacted negatively by AUD, but families show substantial improvements with AUD recovery. Family members can successfully motivate a person with AUD to initiate changes in drinking or to seek AUD treatment. During recovery, family members can provide active support for recovery. Several couple- or family-involved treatments for AUD have been developed and tested in rigorous efficacy trials. Efficacious treatments based in family systems theory or cognitive behavioral approaches focus on the concerned family member alone, or they engage the couple or family as a unit in the treatment. However, most treatments have been studied in fairly homogeneous, heterosexual, White, non-Hispanic populations, limiting the potential generalizability of these treatments. Substantial gaps remain in our understanding of family processes associated with the initiation and maintenance of AUD recovery among adults. This review outlines the existing literature and describes opportunities for future research to address knowledge gaps in understanding the mechanisms by which these treatments are efficacious, use of family-based treatments with diverse populations, integration of pharmacotherapies with family-involved treatment, role of families in recovery-oriented systems of care, and how to improve treatment development and dissemination.

    To read the full text of the article, please visit the publisher’s website.

    Self-reported and Documented Substance Use Among Adolescents in the Pediatric Hospital

    Journal: Pediatrics, 2021, doi: 10.1542/peds.2020-031468

    Authors: Abbey R. Masonbrink, Jane Alyce Hunt, Avleen Bhandal, Kimberly A. Randell, Sarah Mermelstein, Sarah Wells & Melissa K. Miller

    Background and Objectives: Adolescent substance use is associated with numerous adverse health outcomes. A hospitalization represents an opportunity to identify and address substance use. We sought to describe self-reported and documented substance use among hospitalized adolescents.

    Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey of adolescents aged 14 to 18 years old admitted to two pediatric hospitals between August 2019 and March 2020. Using previously validated questions, we assessed the proportion of adolescents reporting ever, monthly, and weekly use of alcohol, marijuana, tobacco, electronic cigarettes, and other illicit drugs and nonmedical use of prescription medications. We reviewed medical records for substance use documentation.

    Results: Among 306 respondents, 57% were older (16–18 years old), 53% were female, and 55% were of non-Hispanic white race and ethnicity. The most frequently reported substances ever used were alcohol (39%), marijuana (33%), and electronic cigarettes (31%); 104 (34%) respondents reported ever use of >1 substance. Compared with younger adolescents, those aged 16 to 18 years were more likely to report ever use of alcohol (29% vs 46%; P = .002), marijuana (22% vs 41%; P < .001), and ≥2 drugs (26% vs 40%; P = .009). A positive substance use history was rarely documented (11% of records reviewed), and concordance between documented and self-reported substance use was also rare.

    Conclusions: In this study of hospitalized adolescents, the most commonly reported substances used were alcohol, marijuana, and electronic cigarettes. Positive substance use documentation was rare and often discordant with self-reported substance use. Efforts to improve systematic screening for substance use and interventions for prevention and cessation in hospitalized adolescents are critically needed.

    To read the full text of the article, please visit the publisher’s website.

    Prospective estimation of the age of initiation of cigarettes among young adults (18–24 years old): Findings from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) waves 1–4 (2013–2017)

    Journal: PLOS ONE, 2021, doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0251246

    Authors: Adriana Pérez ,Arnold E. Kuk, Meagan A. Bluestein, Elena Penedo, Roi San N’hpang, Baojiang Chen, Cheryl L. Perry, Kymberly L. Sterling & Melissa B. Harrell

    Objectives: To prospectively estimate the age of cigarette initiation among young adults (18–24 years old) who were never cigarette users at their first wave of adult study participation overall, by sex, and by race/ethnicity given recent increases in cigarette initiation occurring in young adulthood.

    Methods: Secondary analyses were conducted using the PATH restricted-use adult datasets among young adult never users of cigarettes in waves 1–3 (2013–2016) with outcomes followed-up in waves 2–4 (2014–2017). Interval censoring survival methods were used to estimate the age of initiation of (i) ever, (ii) past 30-day, and (iii) fairly regular cigarette use. Among never cigarette users when they first entered the adult study, interval censoring Cox proportional hazard models were used to explore differences in the estimated age of initiation of the three cigarette use outcomes by sex and by race/ethnicity, controlling for the effect of previous e-cigarette use and the total number of other tobacco products ever used (0–5 products) before cigarette initiation outcomes.

    Results: Among the young adults who were never cigarette users at their first wave of adult participation, the highest increase in cigarette initiation occurred between 18 and 19 years old. By age 21, 10.6% (95% CI: 9.5–11.7) initiated ever cigarette use, 7.7% (95% CI: 6.1–8.1) initiated past 30-day of cigarette use, and 1.9% (95% CI: 1.4–2.5) initiated fairly regular cigarette use. After controlling for other tobacco products: (a) males were 83% more likely to initiate past 30-day cigarette use at earlier ages than females; (b) Hispanic and Non-Hispanic Black young adults had increased risk to initiate past 30-day cigarette use at earlier ages than Non-Hispanic White young adults (62% and 34%, respectively).

    Conclusions: The substantial amount of cigarette initiation among young adults reinforces the need for prevention strategies among this population. Although, interventions are needed for all young adult populations, strategies should target 18-21-year-olds, with potentially differential prevention targets by sex and by race/ethnicity.

    To read the full text of the article, please visit the publisher’s website.


    Implementation of a New Hampshire community-initiated response to the opioid crisis: A mixed-methods process evaluation of Safe Station

    Journal: International Journal of Drug Policy, 2021, doi:10.1016/j.drugpo.2021.103259

    Authors: Sarah K. Moore, Elizabeth C. Saunders, Bethany McLeman, Stephen A. Metcalf, Olivia Walsh, Kathleen Bell, Andrea Meier & Lisa A. Marsch

    Background: New Hampshire (NH) ranked first for fentanyl- and all opioid-related overdose deaths per capita from 2014 to 2016 and third in 2017 with no rate reduction from the previous year relative to all other states in the US. In response to the opioid crisis in NH, Manchester Fire Department (MFD), the state’s largest city fire department, launched the Safe Station program in 2016 in partnership with other community organizations. This community-based response to the crisis—described as a connection to recovery—focuses on reducing barriers to accessing resources for people with substance use and related problems. The study aim is to characterize the multi-organizational partnerships and workflow of the Safe Station model and identify key components that are engaging, effective, replicable, and sustainable.

    Methods: A mixed-methods design included: semi-structured qualitative interviews conducted with 110 stakeholders from six groups of community partners (Safe Station clients, MFD staff and leadership, and local emergency department, ambulance, and treatment partner staff); implementation and sustainability surveys (completed by MFD stakeholders); and ethnographic observations conducted at MFD. Qualitative data were content analyzed and coded using the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research. Survey subscales were scored and evaluated to corroborate the qualitative findings.

    Results: Community partners identified key program characteristics including firefighter compassion, low-threshold access, and immediacy of service linkage. Implementation and sustainability survey data corroborate the qualitative interview and observation data in these areas. All participants agreed that community partnerships are key to the program’s success. There were mixed evaluations of the quality of communication among the organizations.

    Conclusion Safe Station is a novel response to the opioid crisis in New Hampshire that offers immediate, non-judgmental access to services for persons with opioid use disorders requiring community-wide engagement and communication. Data convergence provides guidance to the sustainability and replicability of the program.

    To read the full text of the article, please visit the publisher’s website.



    Treatment of Adolescent e-Cigarette Use: Limitations of Existing Nicotine Use Disorder Treatment and Future Directions for e-Cigarette Use Cessation

    Journal: Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 2021, doi:10.1016/j.jaac.2020.07.007

    Authors: Zachary W. Adams, Elizabeth Kwon, Matthew Aalsma, Tamika C. B. Zapolski & Leslie A. Hulvershorn

    Abstract: Electronic cigarette use (“vaping”) has surged in the United States since the mid-2010s. From 2011 to 2018, current e-cigarette use among high school students escalated from 1.5% to 20.8% (∼3.05 million youths), countering downward trends in combustible nicotine product use (21.8% in 2011 to 13.9% in 2018). Although preventing the initial uptake of vaping is crucial, for the millions of adolescents who have taken up this behavior — many of whom express interest in quitting (eg, 44.5% of current, adolescent non-light e-cigarette users in one US national representative sample) — it is critically important to help them quit vaping so as to curtail future substance use disorders and other health consequences. Here, we discuss several challenges around adolescent vaping treatment, and highlight research areas in urgent need of attention.

    To read the full text of the article, please visit the publisher’s website.

    By Partnership Staff
    May 2021


    May 2021