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Epidemiol Health > Accepted Articles
Epidemiology and Health 2018;e2018030.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2018030    [Accepted] Published online July 2, 2018.
Substance abuse behaviors among university freshman students in Iran: A latent class analysis
Kourosh Kabir2  , Ali Bahari1  , Mohammad Hajizadeh3  , Hamid Allahverdipour4  , Mohammad Javad Tarrahi5  , Ali Fakhari6  , Hossein Ansari7  , Asghar Mohammadpoorasl1 
1Research Center of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran,, Tabriz, Iran
2School of Medicine, Alborz University of Medical Sciences, Karaj, Iran, Karaj, Iran
3School of Health Administration, Faculty of Health, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada, Halifax, Canada
4Department of Health Education & Promotion, School of Health, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran, Tabriz, Iran
5Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Esfahan University of Medical Sciences, Esfahan, Iran, Esfahan, Iran
6Research Center of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran, Tabriz, Iran
7Health Promotion Research Center, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran, Zahedan, Iran
Correspondence  Asghar Mohammadpoorasl ,Tel: 09143025620, Fax: +984133344731, Email: ampoorasl@gmail.com
Submitted: March 29, 2018  Accepted after revision: July 2, 2018
Abstract
Objectives:
Substance abuse behaviors among university freshman students in Iran are poorly understood. This study, for the first time, aims to identify the subgroups of university freshman students in Iran on the basis of substance abuse behaviors. Moreover, it examines the role of socio-demographic characteristics on the membership of each specific subgroup.
Method:
Data for the study were collected cross-sectionally in December 2013 and January 2014 from four major cities in Iran: Tabriz, Qazvin, Karaj and Khoramabad. A total of 5,252 first-semester freshman students were randomly selected using a proportional cluster sampling methodology. A survey questionnaire was used to collect data. Latent class analysis (LCA) was performed to identify the subgroups of students on the basis of substance abuse behaviors and examine the role of socio-demographic characteristics of students on the membership of each specific subgroup.
Results:
The LCA procedure identified three latent classes: 1) healthy group, 2) hookah experimenter group and 3) unhealthy group. Approximately 82%, 16% and 2% of students were classified in healthy, hookah experimenter and unhealthy groups, respectively. Older age, being male, having a family member or a close friend who smokes increase the risk of membership in classes 2 and 3, compared to class 1.
Conclusions:
About 2 percent of freshman students were unhealthy in terms of substance abuse behaviors. In addition, we found that higher age, being male, having smoker close friend and having a family member who smokes may serve as risk factors in substance abuse behaviors.
Keywords: Latent class analysis; risk-taking behaviors; university freshman students; water-pipe smoking; tobacco smoking; substance abuse
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