Brief article Mortality rate among crack/cocaine-dependent patients: A 12-year prospective cohort study conducted in Brazil
Andréa C. Dias, (Ph.D.)a,␣, Marcelo R. Araújo, (Ph.D.)a, John Dunn, (Ph.D.)a, Ricardo C. Sesso, (Ph.D.)b, Viviane de Castro, (Ph.D.)a, Ronaldo Laranjeira, (Ph.D.)
Department of Nephrology, São Paulo Federal University, São Paulo, Brazil
Received 21 June 2010; received in revised form 28 February 2011; accepted 28 March 2011
Crack/cocaine is a highly addictive and powerful stimulant substance that has been abused for decades. Although crack/cocaine is a complex and steady phenom- enon in our global society (Fischer & Coghlan, 2007; Gossop, Marsden, Stewart, & Kidd, 2003), long-term follow-up investigations are scarce (Falck, Wang, & Carlson, 2007, 2008; Hser et al., 2006).
Studies found in the literature are limited to short-term outcomes related to risk and social segregation, such as criminal involvement (Borders et al., 2008; Fischer et al., 2006; Harocopos, Dennis, Turnbull, Parsons, & Hough, 2003), unemployment and low-income status (Buster et al., 2009; Paquette, Roy, Petit, & Boivin, 2010; Siegal, Falck, Wang, & Carlson, 2002), severe health problems (Borders et al., 2009; Falck, Wang, Siegal, & Carlson, 2000), and sexual risk behaviors (Hser, Joshi, Anglin, & Fletcher, 1999; Santibanez et al., 2005; Wechsberg et al., 2010, in press). Furthermore, there are a few studies on recovery processes (Gossop, Marsden, Stewart, & Kidd, 2002; Henskens, Garretsen, Bongers, Van Dijk, & Sturmans, 2008; Siegal, Li, Rapp, & Saha, 2001; Siegal, Li, & Rapp, 2002; Marsden et al., 2009; McKay et al., 2005; Wechsberg, Zule, Riehman, Luseno, & Lam, 2007).
Nonetheless, mortality rate is one relevant outcome that has not been receiving the deserved attention in our field (Gossop, Stewart, Treacy, & Marsden, 2002; Morgan, Vincente, Griffiths, & Hickman, 2008). Identifying long- term mortality indicators is an important task to help us understand and acknowledge specific contexts and risk factors that may contribute to increase death occurrence.
This is a pioneer long-term study examining mortality rate, mortality indicators, and death causes among 131 Brazilian crack/cocaine-dependent patients who sought treatment during mid 1990s in Brazil.