Citation histories of 541 articles published in 1984 in 12 drug and alcohol journals were followed through 1988. Considerable variability in mean citation rates across journals was observed. The mean citation rate for the 541 articles was 3.48. Approximately 71% of the articles examined were cited at least once between 1984 and 1988. The present findings suggest that articles published in drug and alcohol journals may be cited more frequently, and exert their influence longer, than those of the social science literature generally. Qualitative analyses suggest that methodological and review articles tend to be cited most frequently. The need for a comprehensive scientometric examination of the drug and alcohol literature is emphasized as is the potential role of multivariate techniques in the identification of variables predictive of individual article and journal citation rates.