Category: Addictive Behaviors
Cannabis is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States, and is associated with a variety of potential negative consequences (cognitive declines, physical and mental health problems, poorer academic outcomes, driving related accidents; NIDA, 2017). The Cannabis Use Disorders Identification Test Revised (CUDIT-R; Adamson et al., 2010) is an 8-item screening instrument designed to identify potentially problematic or harmful use over the past 6 months. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the internal consistency and criterion validity of the CUDIT-R in a sample of college students who reported recent cannabis use. Participants were 252 undergraduates who reported cannabis use within the past 30 days via an anonymous survey. Participants completed the CUDIT-R and measures of typical smoking behavior (Daily Smoking Questionnaire; DSQ), cannabis related consequences (Marijuana Problem Index; MPI), and problematic cannabis use (self-reported DSM-5 Cannabis Use Disorder Criteria). Internal consistency of the CUDIT-R was acceptable (α=.86). Bivariate correlations between CUDIT-R composite scores (M=7.9, SD=6.6), frequency of cannabis use per week (M=9.1, SD=14.1), total cannabis related consequences (M=29.6, SD=9.6), and total DSM-5 criteria endorsed (M=2.1, SD=2.5) were used to examine criterion validity. CUDIT-R scores were positively correlated with weekly cannabis use (r=.53), MPI scores (r=.72), and DSM-5 criteria scores (r=.79), ps< .001. CUDIT-R scores were compared utilizing a one-way ANOVA across four DSM-5 diagnostic severity levels (based on self-reported symptoms): no diagnosis (n=135, M=3.8, SD=3.2), Mild (n=57, M=9.3, SD=4.0), Moderate (n=31, M=13.5, SD=5.4), and Severe (n=27, M=19.1, SD=6.1), F(3)= 134.4, p < .001. All pairwise comparisons were significant (p< .001). CUDIT-R total scores were highly distinct between DSM-5 diagnostic severity categories; participants classified as not meeting DSM-5 diagnostic criteria obtained mean CUDIT-R scores below the recommended threshold indicating hazardous use (scores less than 8), whereas participants classified as potentially meeting DSM-5 diagnostic criteria obtained mean CUDIT-R scores above the recommended threshold indicating hazardous (scores greater than 8) or disordered use (scores greater than 12). Based on these analyses, the CUDIT-R appears to be a reliable and valid screening measure to identify college students with problematic or harmful cannabis use. Future research should further evaluate the sensitivity and specificity of the CUDIT-R threshold scores with more rigorously established DSM-5 diagnostic severity categories (e.g., diagnostic interviews). Research on the utility of using the CUDIT-R for measuring treatment outcomes is also warranted.
Nicole Schultz– Graduate Student, Auburn University, 226 Thach Hall, Alabama
Drew Bassett– Graduate Student, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama
Bryan Messina– Graduate Student, Auburn University, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Christopher Correia– Professor of Psychology, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama