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Brief report: Synthetic cannabinoid use among military personnel

NCJ Number
American Journal on Addictions Volume: Online Dated: 2023
Date Published

This paper on synthetic cannabinoid (SC) use among military personnel reports results of interviews of veterans participating in veterans treatment courts, with attention to three major themes.


Veterans participating in eight US veterans treatment courts were interviewed (n = 318; response rate = 54.9%). Thematic analyses were completed. Sixty-five veterans (21.3%) reported SC use. Three major themes were identified: synthetic cannabinoids (SCs) were not a suitable marijuana replacement, the experience was unpleasant/problematic, and curiosity, sometimes paired with the perception of safely eluding drug screens, facilitated use. While members of the military experimented with SCs, habitual use of SCs within the Armed Forces does not appear widespread. The perception that SCs are excluded from all urinalyses may contribute to experimentation, but the unpleasant experience generally discourages recurrent use. (Published Abstract Provided)

Date Published: January 1, 2023