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Subgrouping University Students Based on Substance Use Pattern: A Latent Class Analysis

Authors Karimirad MR, Afrashteh S, Gholami A, Hossein Oghli S, Abbasi-Ghahramanloo A, Bordbar L, Salari M

Received 14 April 2020

Accepted for publication 21 September 2020

Published 19 October 2020 Volume 2020:11 Pages 33—39


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Christine Timko

Mohammad Reza Karimirad,1 Sima Afrashteh,2,3 Ali Gholami,4,5 Saeid Hossein Oghli,6 Abbas Abbasi-Ghahramanloo,7 Leila Bordbar,8 Mostafa Salari8

1Department of Psychiatric Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran; 2Department of Public Health, School of Public Health, Bushehr University of Medical Sciences, Bushehr, Iran; 3Student Research Committee, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran; 4Noncommunicable Diseases Research Center, Neyshabur University of Medical Sciences, Neyshabur, Iran; 5Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Neyshabur University of Medical Sciences, Neyshabur, Iran; 6Abhar Branch, Islamic Azad University, Abhar, Iran; 7Department of Public Health, School of Health, Ardabil University of Medical Sciences, Ardabil, Iran; 8Department of Nursing, Hormozgan University of Medical Science, Bandar Abbas, Iran

Correspondence: Abbas Abbasi-Ghahramanloo
School of Health, Ardabil University of Medical Sciences, Daneshgah St, Ardabil 5618953141, Iran
Tel +989145927737

Purpose: High-risk behaviors are the main causes of death and disability among youth and adults. Entering university might cause students to go through their first-hand experience of using substances.
Aim: This study aimed to detect the subgroups of students based on substance use and assess the effects of religiosity and parental support as well as other related factors on the membership of students in each latent class.
Methods: Using a multistage sampling method, this cross-sectional study was conducted in 2016 in Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences (n=524). All students completed a self-report questionnaire. This questionnaire contained questions about substance use, religious beliefs and familial support. The questions of substance use were prepared using the World Health Organization Alcohol, Smoking and Substance Involvement Screening Test (WHO ASSIST). To analyze the data, PROC LCA statistical method was run in SAS9.2.
Results: Three latent classes were identified: 1) nonuser (87.5%), 2) tobacco and illicit drug user (8.7%) and 3) polydrug user (3.8%). Having extramarital sex in the last month (OR=28.29, 95% CI; 8.45– 94.76), living alone (OR=4.29, 95% CI; 1.01– 18.35) and having a higher score of familial support (OR=0.94, 95% CI; 0.89– 0.98) were associated with the polydrug user class. Hookah smoking had the highest (11.1%) and non-medical methylphenidate use had the lowest (2.3%) prevalence among the participants of the study.
Conclusion: This study revealed that 12.5% of the students were either tobacco and illicit drug users or polydrug users. Thus, focusing on the religiosity and familial support may help design some preventive programs for this stratum of young adults.

Keywords: latent class analysis, substance use, religiosity, familial support, university students

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