Research Repository

Pattern and characteristics of ecstasy and related drug (ERD) presentations at two hospital emergency departments, Melbourne, Australia, 2008–2010

Horyniak, Danielle and Degenhardt, Louisa and Smit, D. V and Munir, Venita and Johnston, Jennifer and Fry, Craig L and Dietze, Paul (2013) Pattern and characteristics of ecstasy and related drug (ERD) presentations at two hospital emergency departments, Melbourne, Australia, 2008–2010. Emergency Medicine Journal, 31. pp. 317-322. ISSN 1472-0205 (print) 1472-0213 (online)

Full text for this resource is not available from the Research Repository.

Abstract

Objective To describe patterns and characteristics of emergency department (ED) presentations related to the use of ecstasy and related drugs (ERDs) in Melbourne, Australia. Methods Retrospective audit of ERD-related presentations from 1 January 2008 to 31 December 2010 at two tertiary hospital EDs. Variation in presentations across years was tested using a two-tailed test for proportions. Univariate and multivariate logistic regressions were used to compare sociodemographic and clinical characteristics across groups. Results Most of the 1347 presentations occurred on weekends, 24:00–06:00. Most patients arrived by ambulance (69%) from public places (42%), private residences (26%) and licensed venues (21%). Ecstasy-related presentations decreased from 26% of presentations in 2008 to 14% in 2009 (p<0.05); γ-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) presentations were most common overall. GHB presentations were commonly related to altered conscious state (89%); other presentations were due to psychological concerns or nausea/vomiting. Compared with GHB presentations, patients in ecstasy-related presentations were significantly less likely to require intubation (OR 0.04, 95% CI 0.01 to 0.18), but more likely to result in hospital admission (OR 1.77, 95% CI 1.08 to 2.91). Patients in amphetamine-related cases were older than those in GHB-related cases (median 28.4 years vs 23.9 years; p<0.05), and more likely to have a history of substance use (OR 4.85, 95% CI 3.50 to 6.74) or psychiatric illness (OR 6.64, 95% CI 4.47 to 9.87). Overall, the median length of stay was 3.0 h (IQR 1.8–4.8), with most (81%) patients discharged directly home. Conclusions Although the majority of ERD-related presentations were effectively treated, with discharge within a short time frame, the number and timing of presentations places a significant burden on EDs. ERD harm reduction and improved management of minor harms at licensed venues could reduce this burden.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: ResPubID26697, drug abuse, emergency department, epidemiology
Subjects: FOR Classification > 1117 Public Health and Health Services
Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Centre for Cultural Diversity and Wellbeing
Funders: http://purl.org/au-research/grants/nhmrc/452803
Depositing User: Ms Phung.T Tran
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2014 04:23
Last Modified: 13 Jul 2016 23:16
URI: http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/23685
DOI: 10.1136/emermed-2012-202174
ePrint Statistics: View download statistics for this item

Repository staff only

View Item View Item

Search Google Scholar