Psychopathology Subtypes: Drug Use Motives and Patterns

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Researchers have identified drug user typologies that differentiate self-medication and social/recreation functions Yet, few studies have explored relationships between drug use motives; characteristic use patterns, including drug of choice; and psychopathology subtypes among heterogeneous samples, including user subgroups defined as iatrogenic. This study isolated MMPI-defined psychopathology symptom clusters and compared drug-abusing men assigned to modal profile types on self-reported drug use motives, drug use preferences and patterns, and convergent measures of affect Despite limitations of typology systems, results suggest differences in drug motives and drugs of choice as well as in psychopathology for self-medicating, especially iatrogenic users, compared to those reporting illicit use primarily for pleasure and recreation Identification of the cognitive and affective substrates that prompt drug taking has direct implication for facilitating behavior change and minimizing relapse among chronic drug abusers.

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