The Dangers of Drug Interactions with Stimulant Medication, Common Medication, and Alcohol Use among College Students
Cory, Wendy C
Chemistry and Biochemistry
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The purpose of this research project was to identify the potential for dangerous drug interactions that could occur when non-prescribed stimulant medications are taken in combination with common prescription medications and/or alcohol among College of Charleston students. One hundred seventy-five anonymous surveys were handed out in three undergraduate classes representing three different schools within the college and 108 completed surveys were analyzed. Thirty-five percent of respondents reported using a stimulant medication without a prescription and, of those respondents, 61% reported using alcohol within 24 hours of taking the stimulant medication. Forty-nine percent of participants were currently taking a prescribed medication and 83% reported alcohol use within 24 hours of taking one or more of these prescribed medications. Thirty-five cases with the potential for drug interactions were identified from the data, two of which have the potential for major health implications. These findings suggest the need for medication counseling for college students in order to increase knowledge and awareness of harmful drug interactions.