Presence and Persistence of Psychotic Symptoms in Cocaine- versus Methamphetamine-Dependent Participants

Authors

  • James J. Mahoney III MA,

    1. Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
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  • Ari D. Kalechstein PhD,

    1. Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
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  • Richard De La Garza II PhD,

    1. Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
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  • Thomas F. Newton MD

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
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  • Dr. Newton is now with the Department of Psychiatry, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.

Department of Psychiatry, Baylor College of Medicine, One Baylor Plaza, Mail Stop BCM350, Houston, TX, 77030. E-mail: tnewton@bcm.edu

Abstract

The primary objective of this study was to compare and contrast psychotic symptoms reported by cocaine- and methamphetamine-dependent individuals. Participants included 27 cocaine-dependent and 25 methamphetamine-dependent males, as well as 15 cocaine-dependent and 18 methamphetamine-dependent females. After screening, participants were excluded if they met criteria for any Axis I diagnosis other than nicotine dependence, or methamphetamine or cocaine dependence (ie, participants had to use either methamphetamine or cocaine but were excluded if they met dependence criteria for both). The participants were administered the newly developed Psychotic Symptom Assessment Scale (PSAS), which assesses psychotic symptoms. A high proportion of both cocaine- and methamphetamine-dependent men and women reported delusions of paranoia and auditory hallucinations. However, during the abstinent and intoxicated conditions, methamphetamine-dependent men and women were more likely than cocaine-dependent men and women to report psychotic symptoms. Future studies will compare psychotic symptoms reported by non-dependent recreational stimulant users to stimulant-dependent individuals.

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