Drug preferences of alcoholic polydrug abusers with and without panic

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Manifestations of anxiety, including panic disorder, are more common in the alcoholic population than in the general population. Alcoholics frequently abuse other drugs. The authors hypothesized that alcoholic subjects with panic attacks would abuse anxiolytic drugs more and panic-inducing drugs less frequently than nonanxious alcoholic subjects, and that their abuse of panic-inducing drugs would predate the age at panic onset. Findings indicate that alcoholic subjects with panic attacks (but not panic disorder) abused opiates and sedatives to a greater degree than nonanxious alcoholic subjects and abused marijuana, a panic-inducing, at a younger age. More alcoholic subjects with panic disorder than with panic attack abused cocaine. The prevalence of abuse and the ages at onset of abuse of other drugs were similar for both the panic and the nonpanic group.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-191
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychiatry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1990


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology

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