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May 8, 1972

Venn Diagrams in Drug Abuse Education

Author Affiliations

USNR Naval Medical Field Research Laboratory Camp Lejeune, NC

JAMA. 1972;220(6):860-861. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03200060084022

To the Editor.—  Lipinski's lucid article, "Motivation in Drug Misuse,"1 prompts my note concerning drug abuse education on this military base. Because of our interest in the epidemiology of viral hepatitis and drug usage, the command has asked us to contribute to the medical section (nine hours) of a 36-hour drug abuse course offered to higher-ranking enlisted men and officers. In the ten months of continuing education, two questions directed to the medical officer remain most urgent to our students: (1) What are some of the causes of drug abuse? (2) What are possible approaches to this problem?In an attempt to present lasting concepts in a brief period of teaching, I have used a model borrowed from set theory. Three sets are presented and illustrated by Venn diagrams: (1) the set of all men with unfavorable psychosocial factors predisposing to drug abuse; (2) the set of all men