Pregnancy and race/ethnicity as predictors of motivation for drug treatment

Mary M. Mitchell, S. Geoff Severtson, William W. Latimer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


While drug use during pregnancy represents substantial obstetrical risks to mother and baby, little research has examined motivation for drug treatment among pregnant women. We analyzed data collected between 2000 and 2007 from 149 drug-using women located in Baltimore, Maryland. We hypothesized that pregnant drug-using women would be more likely than non-pregnant drug-using women to express greater motivation for treatment. Also, we explored race/ethnicity differences in motivation for treatment. Propensity score analysis was used to match a sample of 49 pregnant drug-using women with 100 non-pregnant drug-using women. The first logistic regression model indicated that pregnant women were more than four times as likely as non-pregnant women to express greater motivation for treatment. The second logistic regression analysis indicated a significant interaction between pregnancy status and race/ethnicity, such that white pregnant women were nearly eight times as likely as African-American pregnant women to score higher on the motivation for treatment measure. These results suggest that African-American pregnant drug-using women should be targeted for interventions that increase their motivation for treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)397-404
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Motivation for treatment
  • Pregnant drug-users
  • Race/ethnicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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