This study aims to examine the characteristics of pregnant women who used methamphetamine to determine the differences in characteristics between teenagers (aged under 20 or 20–25 years) and adult women who used methamphetamine during this period.
This retrospective study extracted data from the medical records of obstetric patients who gave birth between 2011 and 2015 in a tertiary hospital in Thailand. All included patients were diagnosed with amphetamine use disorder. Demographic data, history of antenatal care, history of substance use and psychiatric evaluations were recorded.
Four hundred and twelve patients were recruited for analysis. Of these, 194 (53.4%) did not attend regular antenatal care, 326 (92.1%) had unplanned pregnancies and 42 (12.5%) had a history of abortions. Socially, 47 patients (21.7%) reported drug use in their families and 160 (49.5%) reported a history of parental separation. Compared with the adult and 20–25 years groups, the < 20 years group tended to have a lower educational level, have experienced parental separation and had more regular antenatal care.
Pregnant teenagers with methamphetamine use had psychosocial difficulties. Physicians should be aware of these psychosocial issues, including education and family planning.
These findings showed that pregnant women who used methamphetamine faced psychosocial difficulties, unplanned pregnancies and inadequate antenatal care. Adult and teenage pregnant women who used methamphetamine differed in some ways. For example, teenage pregnant women tended to be of a lower education level, experienced parental separation and had a history of more frequent antenatal care. Further longitudinal research exploring the outcomes of mothers who used methamphetamine and their children is needed to build on the existing evidence.
The authors thank Lakkhana Thongchot for coordinating this research project, Reelawadee Thumsathan of the Consultation Liaison Unit, Department of Psychiatry, for coordinating the medical records and document preparation, and Nantawat Sitdhiraksa for advice and support.
Funding information: Mahidol University; Government Budget Grant. National Research Innovation and Information System.
Disclosure: The authors declares that there is no conflict of interest.
Ratta-apha, W., Jinanarong, V., Sirikunchoat, J., Tasneeyapant, P., Prachgosin, P. and Sa-guanpanich, N. (2023), "Comparison of characteristics between adolescent and adult pregnant women who used methamphetamine: a retrospective study in a tertiary hospital", Advances in Dual Diagnosis, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/ADD-08-2022-0024
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