Prevalence and temporal trends of crack injection among injection drug users in eastern central Canada
Roy, Élise; Leclerc, Pascale; Morissette, Carole; Arruda, Nelson; Blanchette, Caty; Blouin, Karine; Alary, Michel
SubjectInjection drug use
Background: Little is known about crack injection and its temporal trends in North America. This article describes the extent of crack injection and examines temporal trends among injection drug users (IDUs) recruited from 2003 to 2010 in the SurvUDI network. Methods: IDUs who injected recently (past 6 months) were recruited in harm reduction and health programs in eastern central Canada. Trend analyses were performed using generalized estimating equations. Some IDUs participated multiple times; first interview was retained for the descriptive analyses, while first interview per year was retained for the trend analyses. Results: Of the 4088 IDUs recruited, 15.2% (621) reported crack injection; large variations across sites were noted (range: 0.3%-39.5%). Trend analyses were limited to Ottawa (449 crack injectors) and Montréal (121). For Ottawa, a significant decline was observed, from 48.3% to 36.9%, with a prevalence ratio (PR) of 0.97 per year (95%CI: 0.94-0.99). For Montréal, a significant rise was observed, from 6.0% to 18.4%, with a PR of 1.29 per year (95%CI: 1.19-1.40). Conclusions: Strong variations in crack injection exist throughout the SurvUDI network, and reversed temporal trends have been observed in Ottawa and Montréal. These data will be useful to local harm reduction programs to evaluate the need to distribute items required by crack injectors and to develop prevention messages.
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