Table 2

Participant characteristics and codeine use

ParticipantGender
(F/M)
Initial type of painSubsequent reasons for codeine useTime between first and last useSource of obtaining codeineSeverity of Dependence Scale scoreIntervention and treatment
1MHeadache.To reduce stress.7 years.Prescription, OTC, obtained from family.15*Residential rehabilitation programme.
2FDysentery.Recreational purposes and to reduce stress.1 year.Prescription and OTC.4None.
3FPain after an operation.To sleep, to reduce stress and for depression.1 month.Prescription.7*GP support and counselling.
4FPeriod pain.15 years.Prescription.12*GP support.
5FInjury.To sleep and recreational purposes.15 years.Prescription and OTC.8*None.
6FDeep vein thrombosis from heroin use.Used when heroin unavailable.8 years.Prescription and OTC.11*Previously in residential rehabilitation. At time of interview none.
7FPain after an operation.For anxiety.10 years.Prescription and OTC.14*None.
8FBack pain.20 years.Prescription.7*None.
9FHead injury.To reduce stress and to sleep.2 years.Prescription and OTC.10*None.
10FMigraines.To reduce stress and to sleep.25 years.Prescription.2None.
11MMigraines and back pain.For anxiety and for depression.14 years.Prescription, OTC and internet.0Private psychiatry and private pain specialist.
12FArthritis.2 years.Prescription and OTC.5*None.
13MHeadache and later osteoarthritis.For anxiety, recreational purposes.15 years.Prescription, OTC and obtained from family.1None.
14FArthritis.3 years.OTC.6*None.
15FMigraines, back pain and irritable bowel syndrome.To sleep.8 years.OTC and obtained from a friend.2None.
16FUlcers.To sleep.4 months.OTC.0None.
  • *Scores of 5 and above indicate probable psychological dependence on codeine.

  • F, female; M, male; OTC, over the counter.