Faculty Publications

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August 2011

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Mental Health and Substance Use



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severe mental illness, substance use, human immunodeficiency virus, hepatitis C virus


Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing | Substance Abuse and Addiction


The purpose of this study was to determine whether differences exist between adults with dual and triple diagnoses with regard to substance-related risk behaviors. This secondary analysis was a cross-sectional study. There were 252 subjects with dual and triple diagnoses recruited from residential crisis programs in San Francisco. Using descriptive and logistic regression analyses, subjects in the two groups were compared with regard to demographic data, types of substances, and routes of administration used in the previous 30 days to determine risk for exposure and/or transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/hepatitis C virus. When compared to the dual diagnosis group, subjects with triple diagnoses were four times more likely to have engaged in injection drug use (IDU) (p = 0.001) and 2.6 times more likely to use amphetamines (p = 0.05). They also reported using more types of substances over the lifetime (p < 0.0001). But with regard to other risk behaviors such as alcohol use to intoxication and cocaine/crack use, there were no significant differences. Though many substance-related risk behaviors occurred in both the groups, adults with triple diagnoses were more likely to engage in IDU, amphetamine use, and to use more types of substances over the lifetime. This information has the potential to inform interventions that might prevent/reduce substance-related risk in this population.


This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Mental Health and Substance Use on 08/19/2011, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/17523281.2011.608374.