Journal Article


G Bourke
J Horgan
B Herity
L Daly
E Scallan
P Fitzpatrick
M Boland


Medicine & Nursing

ireland humans alcohol drinking adolescent cross sectional studies female cross cultural comparison students medical statistics numerical data questionnaires smoking cessation health surveys male substance related disorders smoking incidence epidemiology adult

Trends in medical student use of tobacco, alcohol and drugs in an Irish university, 1973-2002. (2005)

Abstract Questionnaire surveys of medical students in an Irish university were carried out in 1973 (n=765), 1990 (n=522) and 2002 (n=537), with differentiation of western students (e.g., from the Republic of Ireland, the UK, or Australia) and non-western students (e.g., Malaysia). We report on changes in tobacco smoking, drinking and drug-taking over three decades, and we note that, among western students, estimated prevalence of being a current smoker has declined overall from 28.8% in 1973 to 15.3% in 1990 to 9.2% in 2002 (p<0.001), falling in both males (p<0.001) and females (p<0.01). Ex-smokers rose from 5.9% to 15.1% between 1990 and 2002, corresponding with the decline in current smokers. The prevalence of current drinkers has risen over the period, to 82.5% among western students in 2002 (p<0.05); female drinking has increased steadily since 1973 (p<0.001), and the overall proportion of CAGE-positive drinkers has risen since 1990 (p<0.001). The mean weekly alcohol consumption has risen in both sexes since 1990 (males 14.3 units to 19.4, p<0.01; females 6.0 to 9.5, p<0.001). There was an increase in the proportion of students ever offered drugs between 1973 and 2002 (p<0.001). Although smoking rates have fallen, our findings show a marked increase in alcohol and drug consumption between 1973 and 2002. Personal misuse of addictive substances by doctors may mean that doctors will fail to take misuse by patients seriously. A need for preventative and ameliorative action during the medical school years is clear.
Collections Ireland -> University College Dublin -> PubMed

Full list of authors on original publication

G Bourke, J Horgan, B Herity, L Daly, E Scallan, P Fitzpatrick, M Boland

Experts in our system

Leslie Daly
University College Dublin
Total Publications: 70
Patricia Fitzpatrick
University College Dublin
Total Publications: 49
M P Boland
University College Dublin
Total Publications: 103