Changes in the prevalence and correlates of cocaine use and cocaine use disorder in the United States, 2001-2002 and 2012-2013

Addict Behav. 2019 Mar;90:250-257. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2018.11.005. Epub 2018 Nov 7.


To present nationally representative data on changes in the prevalences of 12-month cocaine use, cocaine use disorder (CocUD) and 12-month CocUD among 12-month cocaine users between 2001 and 2002 and 2012-2013. Data were derived from the 2001-2002 National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) and the 2012-2013 NESARC-III. Between 2001 and 2002 and 2012-2013, prevalences of 12-month cocaine use and DSM-IV CocUD significantly increased and 12-month CocUD among 12-month users significantly decreased. Increases in risk of cocaine use were seen across nearly all sociodemographic subgroups while increases in CocUD were observed among women, those in the oldest age group, Whites, individuals with the lowest incomes and highest education, and those residing in urban areas. Prevalence of CocUD among users significantly declined overall and among men, individuals aged 30-44 years old, the never-married, respondents with incomes between $20,000 and $34,000, and those residing in the Midwest. Increases in coca cultivation in Colombia in recent years together with increases in the purity of cocaine entering the U.S. portend more significant increases in the rates of cocaine use and CocUD in the U.S. along with increases in cocaine-related morbidity and mortality. The results of this study support the continued monitoring of cocaine use and CocUD in the U.S., especially in view of the narrowing of the gender gap and shifts in race-ethnic, age and socioeconomic differentials seen between 2001 and 2002 and 2012-2013.

Keywords: Coca cultivation; Cocaine use; Cocaine use disorder; DSM-5; National epidemiologic survey on alcohol and related conditions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Cocaine
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Sex Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult


  • Cocaine