Subjective response during continuous infusion of cocaine

Karen M. Kumor, Michael A. Sherer, Jean Gomez, Edward Cone, Jerome H. Jaffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The relationship between the subjective effects induced by IV cocaine injection(s) and cocaine plasma concentrations is complex and difficult to interpret. We designed a study in which bolus loading doses of cocaine followed by 4-hr placebo infusions were compared with the same bolus loading doses of cocaine followed by 4-hr infusions of cocaine calculated to maintain the peak plasma concentrations produced by the bolus. Seven cocaine-using volunteers were successfully studied using a randomized double-blind design, in which self- and observer-rating scales were used to measure drug effects. After the cocaine bolus loading doses, scores for most subjective measures remained elevated when the bolus was followed by a cocaine infusion. In contrast, the subjective responses returned to baseline when the bolus was followed by a placebo infusion. However, self-estimates of the intensity of the cocaine "rush" were not altered by the presence of active cocaine infusions and returned rapidly to baseline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)443-452
Number of pages10
JournalPharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1989


  • Cocaine
  • Continuous infusions
  • Human subjective effects
  • Rush
  • Tolerance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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