Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 1998; 50:27-37.
Cannabis dependence, withdrawal, and reinforcing effects among adolescents with conduct symptoms and substance use disorders.
Crowley, T. J., Macdonald, M. J., Whitmore, E. A., & Mikulich, S. K.
The patients for this study were 165 male and 65 female 13-19-year-olds referred for substance and conduct problems. The results show that most patients claimed serious problems from cannabis, and 78.6% met standard adult criteria for cannabis dependence. Two-thirds of cannabis-dependent patients reported withdrawal. Progression from first to regular cannabis use was as rapid as tobacco progression, and more rapid than that of alcohol, suggesting that cannabis is a reinforcer. The data indicate that for adolescents with conduct problems cannabis use is not benign, and that the drug potently reinforces cannabis taking, producing both dependence and withdrawal.