Drug use among Israeli army personnel: an epidemiological study

Yehuda Lerman*, Moshe Israelshvilli, Dan Vardi, Raphael Slepon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A survey of drug use among Israeli army personnel was conducted as part of a national survey of drug use initiated by the Anti Drug Authority of Israel during 1990. One thousand one hundred and twenty‐five male and female soldiers from various units and ranks were selected by the use of randomized cluster sampling. Seventy to eighty‐five per cent of the soldiers presented negative attitudes towards the use of illicit drugs and its users. Only 67 (6.1%) soldiers reported the use of some illicit drugs in the last 30 days; half of them started to use drugs before the age of 18. The main reported use was of hashish, marijuana and tranquillizers. The use of opium, heroin, cocaine was rarely reported. The use of cigarettes and alcohol within the last 30 days was much higher and was reported by 44.6% and 69.0% of the soldiers, respectively. Using multiple logistic regression analysis it was shown that illicit drug use in the last 30 days was significantly associated with higher number of individuals per household, less satisfaction with military service, and positive attitudes towards the use of drugs. The results of the present study, along with a comparison with different populations that were surveyed parallel to our research indicate that military service in the Israel Defence Force (IDF) is not associated with significant use of illicit drugs. Our results indicate the need for more attention to alcohol and cigarette use among army personnel. 1993 Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-69
Number of pages11
JournalDrug and Alcohol Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • abuse drugs
  • military populations
  • use patterns


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