Substance use & misuse 2017 06 1252(9) 1232-1239 doi 10.1080/10826084.2017.1303509
Despite the increasing prevalence of methamphetamine use among the young population in Iran, the body of literature on their methamphetamine use remains slim. This study was designed to investigate the knowledge, attitude, and practices of Iranian youth about methamphetamine to help inform harm reduction policies catered towards young men and women. In a cross-sectional study using multistage sampling in 13 provinces, 4868 participants aged 15-29 years old were recruited. Knowledge, attitude and practices of youth about methamphetamine were assessed through a pilot-tested interviewer-administered questionnaire. Descriptive statistics were presented and potential associations were assessed using Chi-square test and independent samples t-test. Mean age ±SD of the participants was 21.8 ± 5.6 years, and 49.5% were women. Overall, 21.7% and 37.7% of the participants had high knowledge scores and positive attitudes, respectively. Among the 19-29 years old participants, ever methamphetamine use and injection was estimated at 5.74% (95% CI: 4.21, 7.90) and 1.8% (95% CI: 1.13, 2.83), respectively. Most (44.3%) had started methamphetamine use for fun and media (69.1%) was reported as their main source of information on methamphetamine use. Methamphetamine use is a concerning health problem among Iranian youth. Comprehensive multi-sectoral downstream and upstream interventions that involve educational settings, as well as media, are urgently needed to help reduce the burden of methamphetamine use among Iranian youth.