Recent fentanyl use among people who inject drugs: Results from a rapid assessment in Baltimore, Maryland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Fentanyl-related mortality continues to increase in the US, but knowledge of the drivers of fentanyl use (both intentional and unintentional) remains limited. We conducted a rapid assessment to characterize knowledge, attitudes and practices related to fentanyl use in a community-based cohort of current and former people who inject drugs (PWID) in Baltimore, Maryland. Methods: Between November 2017 and June 2018, participants of the AIDS Linked to the IntraVenous Experience (ALIVE) cohort completed a survey related to fentanyl use. Correlates of recent (past 6 months) fentanyl use and preference for fentanyl-contaminated and -substituted heroin (FASH) were examined using logistic regression among persons who reported using drugs in the prior six months. Results: Of 994 participants, 28% reported ever having used fentanyl, with 58% of those reporting recent use. Independent correlates of recent fentanyl use among the subset of participants reporting recent (past 6 month) drug use were younger age, male sex, homelessness, opioid use, cocaine use, and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). 18% of those who recently used fentanyl reported preference for FASH, which was associated with younger age, homelessness and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). Conclusions: Recent fentanyl use was commonly reported. Interventions to reduce the harms associated with fentanyl use should target young, homeless PWID who may be more likely to seek out fentanyl.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-46
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Drug Policy
Volume74
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

Fingerprint

Baltimore
Fentanyl
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Homeless Persons
Heroin
Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
Injections
Cocaine
Opioid Analgesics
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome

Keywords

  • Fentanyl
  • Harm reduction
  • Heroin
  • Opioid overdose
  • PWID

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health Policy

Cite this

@article{15297d0b28e545088fdd3223e2bbe636,
title = "Recent fentanyl use among people who inject drugs: Results from a rapid assessment in Baltimore, Maryland",
abstract = "Background: Fentanyl-related mortality continues to increase in the US, but knowledge of the drivers of fentanyl use (both intentional and unintentional) remains limited. We conducted a rapid assessment to characterize knowledge, attitudes and practices related to fentanyl use in a community-based cohort of current and former people who inject drugs (PWID) in Baltimore, Maryland. Methods: Between November 2017 and June 2018, participants of the AIDS Linked to the IntraVenous Experience (ALIVE) cohort completed a survey related to fentanyl use. Correlates of recent (past 6 months) fentanyl use and preference for fentanyl-contaminated and -substituted heroin (FASH) were examined using logistic regression among persons who reported using drugs in the prior six months. Results: Of 994 participants, 28{\%} reported ever having used fentanyl, with 58{\%} of those reporting recent use. Independent correlates of recent fentanyl use among the subset of participants reporting recent (past 6 month) drug use were younger age, male sex, homelessness, opioid use, cocaine use, and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). 18{\%} of those who recently used fentanyl reported preference for FASH, which was associated with younger age, homelessness and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). Conclusions: Recent fentanyl use was commonly reported. Interventions to reduce the harms associated with fentanyl use should target young, homeless PWID who may be more likely to seek out fentanyl.",
keywords = "Fentanyl, Harm reduction, Heroin, Opioid overdose, PWID",
author = "Megan Buresh and Becky Genberg and Jacquie Astemborski and Kirk, {Gregory D} and Mehta, {Shruti Hemendra}",
year = "2019",
month = "12",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.drugpo.2019.08.006",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "74",
pages = "41--46",
journal = "International Journal of Drug Policy",
issn = "0955-3959",
publisher = "Elsevier",

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T1 - Recent fentanyl use among people who inject drugs

T2 - Results from a rapid assessment in Baltimore, Maryland

AU - Buresh, Megan

AU - Genberg, Becky

AU - Astemborski, Jacquie

AU - Kirk, Gregory D

AU - Mehta, Shruti Hemendra

PY - 2019/12/1

Y1 - 2019/12/1

N2 - Background: Fentanyl-related mortality continues to increase in the US, but knowledge of the drivers of fentanyl use (both intentional and unintentional) remains limited. We conducted a rapid assessment to characterize knowledge, attitudes and practices related to fentanyl use in a community-based cohort of current and former people who inject drugs (PWID) in Baltimore, Maryland. Methods: Between November 2017 and June 2018, participants of the AIDS Linked to the IntraVenous Experience (ALIVE) cohort completed a survey related to fentanyl use. Correlates of recent (past 6 months) fentanyl use and preference for fentanyl-contaminated and -substituted heroin (FASH) were examined using logistic regression among persons who reported using drugs in the prior six months. Results: Of 994 participants, 28% reported ever having used fentanyl, with 58% of those reporting recent use. Independent correlates of recent fentanyl use among the subset of participants reporting recent (past 6 month) drug use were younger age, male sex, homelessness, opioid use, cocaine use, and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). 18% of those who recently used fentanyl reported preference for FASH, which was associated with younger age, homelessness and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). Conclusions: Recent fentanyl use was commonly reported. Interventions to reduce the harms associated with fentanyl use should target young, homeless PWID who may be more likely to seek out fentanyl.

AB - Background: Fentanyl-related mortality continues to increase in the US, but knowledge of the drivers of fentanyl use (both intentional and unintentional) remains limited. We conducted a rapid assessment to characterize knowledge, attitudes and practices related to fentanyl use in a community-based cohort of current and former people who inject drugs (PWID) in Baltimore, Maryland. Methods: Between November 2017 and June 2018, participants of the AIDS Linked to the IntraVenous Experience (ALIVE) cohort completed a survey related to fentanyl use. Correlates of recent (past 6 months) fentanyl use and preference for fentanyl-contaminated and -substituted heroin (FASH) were examined using logistic regression among persons who reported using drugs in the prior six months. Results: Of 994 participants, 28% reported ever having used fentanyl, with 58% of those reporting recent use. Independent correlates of recent fentanyl use among the subset of participants reporting recent (past 6 month) drug use were younger age, male sex, homelessness, opioid use, cocaine use, and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). 18% of those who recently used fentanyl reported preference for FASH, which was associated with younger age, homelessness and daily injection (p < 0.05 for all). Conclusions: Recent fentanyl use was commonly reported. Interventions to reduce the harms associated with fentanyl use should target young, homeless PWID who may be more likely to seek out fentanyl.

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KW - Harm reduction

KW - Heroin

KW - Opioid overdose

KW - PWID

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