Department of Medicine, College of Medicine, Kirkuk University


Background: Drug abuse is the self-administration of any drug in a manner that diverts from approved medical or social patterns within a given culture. Legal or licit drugs and substances are socially accepted and their use does not constitute any criminal offence. Objective: To determine types of drugs which are abused, to demonstrate the sociodemographic profile of the abusers, the sources of starting drugs consumption and the associated psychiatric disorders among them. Patients and Methods: A descriptive study of (372) patients with drug abuse consisting of (285) males and (87) females. The study was done in Kirkuk city between December 2012 and January 2014. Diagnosis of drug abuse was made according to the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of diseases-Fourth Text Revised (DSM-IVTR). Results: The majority of the patients were singles (56.4%), (83.6%) with the age range of (17-38) years, (64%) were illiterate and primary school educate, (72%) were unemployed, (70%) from urban area. (17%), (16%), (13%), of the patients abused, Tramadol, poly drugs, and Alprazolam respectively. (18%) of the patients were diagnosed anxiety disorders, and (3.7%) of the patients were diagnosed with somatoform. Conclusions: Drug abuse is a growing problem in Iraq. Unaware of medical professional of some drugs with potential risks of abuse, unsupervised prescription and easy access of these drugs, in addition to the characteristic groups of high risks of abuse, such as young males, poorly educated, unemployed, those who were exposed to stressful factors and psychiatric patients. All these need to be addressed by medical, legal and social authorities.