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Nonmedical ADHD Stimulant Use in Fraternities

Alan DeSantis, Seth M. Noar, Elizabeth M. Webb

Objective: Quantitative methods were used to investigate the use of nonmedical attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) stimulants by fraternity members. Method: Three hundred thirty-three fraternity members at a large, public southeastern research university in the United States were surveyed in classes and at other campus locations. Once those with legal prescriptions for ADHD stimulants were removed (n = 26), the sample size was 307. Results: Of the study participants, 55% (n = 170) reported the nonmedical use of ADHD stimulants. Use was significantly higher among upperclassmen, those living off campus, and those who regularly smoke marijuana. The vast majority of fraternity members (1) reported academic motives for use, (2) did not view ADHD stimulants as dangerous, and (3) procured stimulants from their friends. Conclusions: These results demonstrate a high rate of use of these drugs in a campus population. More studies on nonmedical users (and suppliers of users) are needed, as are educational interventions on university campuses, especially among members of fraternities. (J. Stud. Alcohol Drugs 70: 952-954, 2009)