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November 1971

Psychoactive Drug UsePatterns Found in Samples From a Mental Health Clinic and a General Medical Clinic

Author Affiliations

Irvine, Calif
From the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, College of Medicine, University of California, Irvine.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1971;25(5):395-397. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1971.01750170011002

New patients coming to a mental health crisis clinic (N = 65) and a general medical care clinic (N = 48) were surveyed before admission for on-going psychoactive druguse (tranquilizers, antidepressants, analgesics, sedatives, psychomotor stimulants, and autonomic drugs), whether these drugs were obtained by prescription, from relatives or friends, or over-the-counter. The crisis clinic survey revealed that 66% of the patients were taking some kind of psychoactive medication, and these patients had significantly poorer average ego strength scores than those not on such drugs. The medical care clinic survey revealed 65% were using some kind of psychoactive medication. Comparison of the two samples showed crisis clinic patients were taking significantly more tranquilizers and significantly fewer analgesic and autonomic drugs.