Substance abuse is infrequently addressed during pre- and post-transplant care. However, the significant increase in the use of nicotine- and marijuana-containing products in the general and transplant adolescent population is concerning. In addition, alcohol use/abuse remains prevalent in the US population as it is highly accessible. Pediatric transplant providers should be prepared to screen for the use of any of these substances (eg, alcohol, nicotine, marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines) and to counsel them about the dangers of substance use and abuse including the unique dangers of the substances as a transplant recipient. Formal screening tools (in children as young as 9 years) should always be used as casual assessment of substance abuse has a high failure rate. This review summarizes the substances most commonly used in adolescent transplant recipients and the approach that transplant providers should take in order to prevent, decrease, or halt use in this patient population.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health