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Substance and Psychiatric Disorders Among Men and Women Repeat Driving Under the Influence Offenders Who Accept a Treatment-Sentencing Option
Debi A. LaPlante, Sarah E. Nelson, Siri S. Odegaard, Richard A. LaBrie, Howard J. Shaffer
Objective: Driving under the influence (DUI) continues to be a serious public health concern in the United States. Research suggests that the substance use/abuse and psychiatric histories of repeat offenders might contribute to the persistence of this phenomenon. Because psychiatric histories could be important to recovery and likely differ substantially between men and women, the present study examined psychiatric and substance-use histories of male and female DUI repeat offenders in treatment. Method: Seven hundred twenty-nine residents at the Middlesex Driving Under the Influence of Liquor program in Tewksbury, MA, a licensed residential facility providing treatment and education to repeat DUI offenders, participated in the current study during the course of 12 months. These participants completed a standardized diagnostic interview12 modules of the Composite International Diagnostic Interview as part of their intake interview. Results: Female repeat offenders in this study were substantially different from male repeat offenders in lifetime and past-year psychiatric comorbidity patterns. Women had more extensive histories of psychiatric morbidity (i.e., psychiatric disorder in addition to substance abuse/dependence, alcohol abuse/dependence, and pathological gambling) and were more likely than men to report a history of multiple morbidities (i.e., multiple psychiatric disorders in addition to substance-related or gambling disorders). Conclusions: Both male and female repeat DUI offenders have extensive but different psychiatric histories that might play a significant role in DUI recidivism. These differences in psychiatric and substance-use histories among men and women could have important implications for treatment and prevention of DUI. (J. Stud. Alcohol Drugs 69: 209-217, 2008)