Association of Trauma on Chronic, Infectious, and Reproductive-related Disease Prevalence among Women in Substance Abuse Treatment




Guardado, Annie
Keck, Erin
Dokpesi, Philip
Bakre, Sulaimon
Felini, Martha


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Background: Previous literature demonstrates that individuals with co-occurring substance use disorders (SUDCs) often have comorbid conditions. Although SUDCs have been linked to higher use of medical management, there are few studies of the burden of disease types across and within high risk women in substance abuse treatment. The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to analyze the prevalence of chronic, infectious, and reproductive-related disease separately among women in substance abuse treatment and further explore whether prior trauma history was associated with disease prevalence. Methods: As part of a larger cancer prevention project conducted in Dallas from 2012-2016, 1076 women in treatment at the largest substance abuse treatment center in North Texas received education regarding cancer prevention, and were offered a well woman cancer screening exam. Data collected from a self-administered questionnaire included demographics, medical health history, reproductive history, substance use history, and trauma experience (physical, sexual, verbal/emotional) within the last 6 months. Participants were from 119 counties across Texas, including border counties. Descriptive and stratified analyses were performed to determine disease prevalence by trauma history. Results: Exposure to trauma was correlated with a higher prevalence of chronic disease (p Conclusions: Findings suggest comorbid disease and adverse reproductive outcomes are prevalent in this population. An exceptional window of opportunity exists to integrate preventive and preconception care interventions within treatment recovery centers, but the key challenge will be determining how it can be best delivered to women with significant trauma histories.