Childhood trauma, family stress and depression among Mexican American gang non-injecting heroin users

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Avelardo Valdez
Alberto G. Mata, Jr
Charles Kaplan
Alice Cepeda


This paper examines childhood trauma, depression and psychological family
and cultural stress among Mexican American male non-injecting users (NIU) of heroin in San Antonio, Texas. The research enhances the findings from a
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) study, "Drug Related Gang Violence
in South Texas", conducted from 1995-1997. A high rate of non-injecting heroin use among these young male Mexican-American gang members
emerged as a special concern because of the serious health consequences
associated with non-injecting heroin use. HIV and AIDS among Hispanics are
attributed primarily to injecting drug use, followed by sexual transmission
among heterosexuals and male-to-male sexual contact.

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