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Substance Use in US Adults with Type 1 Diabetes

Diabetes Educ; ePub 2018 Sep 11; Petry, Foster, et al

Adults with type 1 diabetes (T1D) in the US use substances at rates that meet or exceed the general population, according to a recent study, and problematic use occurs at rates similar to the general population. Standardized instruments for assessing tobacco, alcohol, and other psychoactive substance use were emailed to 4,311 adult participants at 69 T1D Exchange Registry Exchange Registry centers. A total of 936 respondents (61% female, 90% non-Hispanic white, age 38 ± 16 years) completed the survey. Researchers found:

  • In the sample, 166 (18%) reported past-year use of tobacco and 51 (5%) reported daily use.
  • Past-year alcohol use was reported by 742 (79%) participants, past-month use by 592 (63%), and daily/near-daily use by 87 (9%); 174 (19%) were classified as binge drinkers and 93 (11%) as problem drinkers.
  • Nonprescription use of another psychoactive substance in the past year was reported by 228 (24%), with 167 (18%) indicating they used marijuana, 67 (7%) opioids, 45 (5%) sedatives, and 37 (4%) stimulants.
  • Past-year problem use of these substances was noted in 31 (3%) respondents.

Petry NM, Foster NC, Cengiz E, Tamborlane WV, Wagner J, Polsky S. Substance use in adults with type 1 diabetes in the T1D Exchange. [Published online ahead of print September 11, 2018]. Diabetes Educ. doi:10.1177%2F0145721718799088.