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Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry

Print version ISSN 1516-4446On-line version ISSN 1809-452X


GIUSTI, Jackeline S; SANUDO, Adriana  and  SCIVOLETTO, Sandra. Differences in the pattern of drug use between male and female adolescents in treatment. Rev. Bras. Psiquiatr. [online]. 2002, vol.24, n.2, pp.80-82. ISSN 1516-4446.

INTRODUCTION/OBJECTIVES: The pattern of drug use among adolescents is not well known. Epidemiologic studies have reported no difference in the prevalence of drug use between genders. The present study wanted to assess the difference in drug use between genders in adolescents. The following variables were assessed: gender ratio of those looking for treatment; age they looked for treatment; age of the first drug use; substances used; with whom they first used drugs; pattern of drug use; possibly-related behavior (illegal acts, problems with the police and school delay). METHODS: Medical records of adolescents treated between 1993 and 2000 in a public medical center of the city São Paulo were analyzed. RESULTS: One-hundred and five medical records of adolescents aged 10 to 17 were reviewed. There were no differences between genders according to: age they looked for treatment; age of the first drug use; substances used; and illegal acts. There was a higher prevalence of male adolescents regarding to problems with the police and school delay. CONCLUSIONS: Data suggest that the behavioral consequences of drug use in female adolescents are less evident than in male adolescents, what could explain the lower frequency in which female adolescents had specialized treatment.

Keywords : Adolescence; Gender; Street drugs; Behavior.

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