GALICIA, Spain, Nov. 23 (UPI) -- A high scale-of-craving score, an anti-social personality and previous heroin use are linked to returned use of cocaine, researchers in Spain said.
Lead author Ana Lopez of the University of Santiago de Compostela said the scale of craving measures the level of anxiety or desire to take drugs at the start of the treatment.
Lopez and colleagues analyzed the significant factors -- sociodemographic, psychopathological and patterns of drug and other substance abuse -- involved in patients continuing to use cocaine two years after having requested treatment.
"The objectives of the study were to understand the factors linked to treatment outcomes, in order to help people get the right kind of treatment, reduce their chances of abandoning the treatment, ensure they stop using drugs and don't fall back into the habit," Lopez said in a statement.
The researchers analyzed a sample of 38 people -- 35 men and 3 women, with an average age of 31 -- who sought treatment for problems related to abuse of cocaine in drug treatment centers in Galicia.
"It's no surprise that people who have tried substances such as heroin, which is broadly rejected by society, score highly for impulsiveness and sensation-seeking and these are also features that are characteristic of an anti-social personality type," Lopez said.
The study was published in the journal Psicologia Conductual.