STUDY: Harm Reduction Practices in Ecstasy Users

Cowboy Mac

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hi guys, here is a great opportunity to help contribute to some research in the area of harm reduction that users employ to help negate/minimise negative effects.


VOLUNTEERS RESIDING IN AUSTRALIA REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE IN A STUDY ABOUT ECSTASY HARM REDUCTION PRACTICES

My name is Kelly Allott and I am conducting a research project as part of a Doctorate of Clinical Neuropsychology at Monash University, Melbourne. My supervisor is Associate Professor Jennifer Redman of The Centre for Applied Drug and Alcohol Research (CADAR), Monash University.

I am seeking English-speaking people who are currently resident in Australia and over 18 years of age who have used ecstasy at least once in their lifetime who are willing to complete an anonymous questionnaire. The questionnaire covers questions such as amount and experience of ecstasy use, other substance use, and the use of harm reduction practices. The questionnaire takes approximately 15 minutes to complete and can be completed in private at your convenience.

If this research project interests you, please download the questionnaire from here and send free of postage to: Kelly Allott, Reply Paid 63505, D Psych Program, Monash University, VIC, 3800.
 

backindauk

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I have sent mine off.
Finally, someone taking an interest (maybe if only for educational purposes) in methods of harm reduction. Perhaps the final figures will be published in a report.

Care to enlighten us on the issues associated with this, Velocidex?


:)
 

*~bickie~*

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Yeh I just finished filling mine out and will send in tonights mail!!!

We should see if we can get the statistics posted on bluelight!!!
 

MOTOMAN

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what happened to modern technology? PDF file to download and send via mail? I would have thought something online would have been more effective.
 

Urbanhog

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^^ I argee
 

Cowboy Mac

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Originally posted by MOTOMAN
what happened to modern technology? PDF file to download and send via mail? I would have thought something online would have been more effective.


I asked her this the other day, this is what she said:
Regarding your question about sending the questionnaire in hard copy, I decided against filling it out electronically because I don't want people from overseas filling it in, which they may do if it's in electronic format. I am only looking for Australian residents. Also, I don't want people stuffing around and filling it in more than once or filling it in just for fun and not being serious. I think people who fill in a hard copy and send it back are more likely to be serious about completing the questionnaire properly. Finally, it was going to take longer to set up the electronic version and higher costs would be involved in setting it up. Hope this answers your question!

I completely agree that this was the better decision as it will keep the data integrity high.
 

smileyfish

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I agree with her decision to use a print & mail system, despite the annoyance factor ;)

I left comments all over the damn thing, poor girl! Some interesting questions and I will be pleased to see the results posted up here. I did think it was a little simplistic for a PhD project however...

:)Smiley
 

Tronica

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Published results from this study!

Patterns of use and harm reduction practices of ecstasy users in Australia.

Allott K, Redman J.

Department of Psychology, Monash University, Vic. 3800, Australia.

Drug Alcohol Depend. 2005 Oct 13; [Epub ahead of print]

Harm reduction refers to the use of strategies to prevent or reduce harmful consequences associated with illicit drug use. There is a paucity of research concerning the harm reduction practices employed by ecstasy users. This study aimed to explore the prevalence, nature and factors associated with harm reduction practices employed by ecstasy users in Australia, with a specific focus on the practice of preloading and postloading-the use of pharmaceuticals and natural products prior and subsequent to ecstasy use. One hundred and sixteen Australian residents aged 18 years and over who had used ecstasy at least once in their lifetime were recruited via convenience sampling, 'snowballing' and via web-based advertisements and completed an anonymous questionnaire. Participants reported using a wide range of strategies for minimising ecstasy-associated harm. The most common strategies used for reducing negative side effects, 'comedown' or neurotoxicity were drinking water, limiting or reducing ecstasy use, taking breaks and taking vitamins or other natural substances. Forty percent of the sample had tested their ecstasy pills for the presence of MDMA. Forty-one percent and 47% of participants had engaged in pre- and postloading, respectively, with the most common pre- and postloading substances being multivitamins, 5-HTP, magnesium and fruit or fruit juice. Younger mean age and 'high' total occasions of ecstasy use was significantly associated with preloading, and 'high' total use and frequency of use was associated with postloading. The results indicate that ecstasy users are aware of the potential for harm associated with ecstasy use and attempt to minimise harm by actively employing strategies. By exploring the pattern of harm reduction practices among ecstasy users, this study has highlighted the need for further research into the efficacy and potential clinical drug interactions associated with such practices, as well as the need for investigation of how such practices may affect patterns of ecstasy use.

PMID: 16226850 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Note that 40% of people said they tests their pills. In the full text, you see that many of those people only test them occasionally.
 

static_mind

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40% test there pills. I duno that sounds a little high. Im the only one out of my friends that test there pills. Perhaps the test is a little bias towards the more harm concenous people like us. For isntantce only a fraction of people who take mdma would visit bluelight, and thoes who do are more intrested in harm reduction then the rest.
 

Tronica

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Yup, she mentions that in the fulltext - that given this sample was recruited from ecstasy-related websites which promote harm reduction, that figure would be inflated.

The PDI study which recruits across Australia and uses more varied recruitment methods found about one fifth of people had ever tested their pills. But what was interesting is that when asked 'what would be useful resources if made more available locally' 60% said pill test kits. (I'll post this up on here when it's available online, in the next month or so!).
 

This_is_my_alias

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There are a lot of mdma/pill users who do NOT know about this site, do NOT know about pillreports.com and do NOT even know that testers exist.

enlighten.org is a great site and you should buy your tester from there, *BUT*

For all the other people who dont know about testers or enlighten, getting the harm reduction message across is hard, and how are you going to test your pill if you dont know reagent testing is available?? Its not as if you can walk into a shop, see a mandelin or marquis or anything like that and go "oh wow, i'll buy this"

I know that there are some great organisations out there at a lot of events doing a lot of good things, like promoting harm minimisation etc, but how do you reach the kids who dont go to raves, who just take pills with there friends at home or at private parties???

SOrry if this is against the guidelines or not posted in the right thread or anything, but I felt the urge to vent. What can be done about this? the government does not seem to keen on promoting it....


Plus its not likely that dealers are going to tell their customers about testing.
 

Cazoom

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The government (Christopher Pyne - Federal Parliamentary Secretary for Health) refuses to allow basically any form of harm reduction to take place as it gives the message that taking drugs it OK. Yeah, people are dying, but because they're doing something illegal it really doesn't matter to them.

Some people still believe that if you're having a bad time on ecstasy, drinking large amounts of water will help flush it out of the system. The government would much rather show a few dead bodies and the word 'ecstasy' than to show what actually caused it to occur. You, as a member of the bluelight community should inform and correct friends' thoughts about substances when they are obviously misinformed.
 

Tronica

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Feel free to vent - it's a really frustrating issue that we can't get more supported harm reduction campaigns ! In the meantime we can support Enlighten and inform as many people as we can about the risks of not testing - but this is difficult when testing itself isn't 100% reliable.

"You, as a member of the bluelight community should inform and correct friends' thoughts about substances when they are obviously misinformed."
I fully agree Cazoom - we can all reach many people and it all counts.
 

MooShiE

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^ I agree that I think as bluelighters we should inform our friends who are obviously misinformed but I also think we should stress to our friends this important factor, which is ... "Dont trust what im saying 100%, do your own research for your own self so YOU KNOW EXACTALLY" cause... who knows if you if u got misinformed yourself! With the amount of misinformation that floats around this forum is just one massive indication of how you could get misinformed :)
 
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