Patterns of cocaine use during treatment: Associations with baseline characteristics and follow-up functioning

Corey R. Roos, Charla Nich, Chung Jung Mun, Justin Mendonca, Theresa A. Babuscio, Katie Witkiewitz, Kathleen M. Carroll, Brian D. Kiluk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective: Abstinence outcomes are typically prioritized in the treatment of cocaine use disorder while ignoring patterns of low-frequency cocaine use. This study examined patterns of cocaine use frequency during treatment and evaluated how these patterns related to baseline characteristics and functioning outcomes 6and 12 months after treatment. Method: We used a pooled dataset (N =720) from sevenr and omized clinical trials for cocaine use dis order.The Addiction Severity Index(ASI) was used to assess functioning. Repeated-measures latent class analysis was used to derive patterns of cocaine use. Results: Three patterns were identified: abstinence (10.6%), low-frequency use (approximately 1day/week; 66.3%), and persistent frequent use (approximately4days/week; 23.1%).The low-frequency group was as-sociated with male gender, younger age, and a criminal justice referral. The abstinent group had the highest alcohol problem severity score at baseline. At Month 6, the low-frequency group reported lower problem severity than the persistent frequent use group across multiple ASI areas, including the cocaine use as well as psychological, family, employment, and legal domains. At Month 12, the low-frequency group did not differ from the abstinent group in problem severity on any ASI domain and, relative to the persistent frequent use group, had lower cocaine use and employment problem severity. Conclusions: These findings highlight the importance of adopting a harm reduction approach and recognizing the potential clinical benefits associated with non abstinent outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)431-440
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of studies on alcohol and drugs
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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