Cocaine craving and use during daily life

Kenzie L. Preston, Massoud Vahabzadeh, John Schmittner, Jia Ling Lin, David A. Gorelick, David H. Epstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Rationale: Craving is often assumed to cause ongoing drug use and relapse and is a major focus of addiction research. However, its relationship to drug use has not been adequately documented. Objectives: The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between craving and drug use in real time and in the daily living environments of drug users. Methods: In a prospective, longitudinal, cohort design (ecological momentary assessment), 112 cocaine-abusing individuals in methadone maintenance treatment rated their craving and mood at random times (two to five times daily, prompted by electronic diaries) as they went about their everyday activities. They also initiated an electronic diary entry each time they used cocaine. Drug use was monitored by thrice-weekly urine testing. Results: During periods of urine-verified cocaine use, ratings of cocaine craving increased across the day and were higher than during periods of urine-verified abstinence. During the 5 h prior to cocaine use, ratings of craving significantly increased. These patterns were not seen in ratings of heroin craving or mood (e.g., feeling happy or bored). Conclusions: Cocaine craving is tightly coupled to cocaine use in users' normal environments. Our findings provide previously unavailable support for a relationship that has been seriously questioned in some theoretical accounts. We discuss what steps will be needed to determine whether craving causes use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-301
Number of pages11
JournalPsychopharmacology
Volume207
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2009
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Cocaine
Urine
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Craving
Methadone
Heroin
Drug Users
Emotions
Recurrence
Research

Keywords

  • Addiction
  • Cocaine
  • Craving
  • Ecological momentary assessment
  • Mood
  • Psychological theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology

Cite this

Preston, K. L., Vahabzadeh, M., Schmittner, J., Lin, J. L., Gorelick, D. A., & Epstein, D. H. (2009). Cocaine craving and use during daily life. Psychopharmacology, 207(2), 291-301. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00213-009-1655-8

Cocaine craving and use during daily life. / Preston, Kenzie L.; Vahabzadeh, Massoud; Schmittner, John; Lin, Jia Ling; Gorelick, David A.; Epstein, David H.

In: Psychopharmacology, Vol. 207, No. 2, 12.2009, p. 291-301.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Preston, KL, Vahabzadeh, M, Schmittner, J, Lin, JL, Gorelick, DA & Epstein, DH 2009, 'Cocaine craving and use during daily life', Psychopharmacology, vol. 207, no. 2, pp. 291-301. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00213-009-1655-8
Preston KL, Vahabzadeh M, Schmittner J, Lin JL, Gorelick DA, Epstein DH. Cocaine craving and use during daily life. Psychopharmacology. 2009 Dec;207(2):291-301. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00213-009-1655-8
Preston, Kenzie L. ; Vahabzadeh, Massoud ; Schmittner, John ; Lin, Jia Ling ; Gorelick, David A. ; Epstein, David H. / Cocaine craving and use during daily life. In: Psychopharmacology. 2009 ; Vol. 207, No. 2. pp. 291-301.
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