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Older and younger patients with substance use disorders: outpatient mental health service use and functioning over a 12-month interval.

Brennan PL, Nichol AC, Moos RH. Older and younger patients with substance use disorders: outpatient mental health service use and functioning over a 12-month interval. Psychology of addictive behaviors : journal of the Society of Psychologists in Addictive Behaviors. 2003 Mar 1; 17(1):42-8.

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Abstract:

This observational study compared a nationwide sample of older patients with substance use disorders (n = 3,598; age > 55) with a demographically and diagnostically matched sample of younger patients on initial functioning, subsequent outpatient mental health service use, and 12-month follow-up outcomes. Older patents were initially functioning a well as or better than younger patients according to substance use, psychiatric, family, and legal criteria. The groups received comparable amounts of outpatient mental health care. At a 12-month follow-up, older patients generally had better substance use and functioning outcomes than did younger patients. The findings suggest that older patients with substance use disorders are keeping pace with demographically and diagnostically comparable younger patients in obtaining specialized outpatient mental health services and that they have positive treatment prognoses.





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