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Man depressed with wine bottle sitting on bench outdoor. People abuse and alcoholism probl

Alcohol, drugs and treatment

About half of all inmates have a substance abuse disorder upon entry to prison. After release, the risk of overdose death and relapse into substance abuse is very high. Because of this, it is important to detect substance abuse disorders upon arrival at the prison and offer adequate treatment for substance abuse disorders during imprisonment. This will lead to better health for people with substance abuse disorders in prison.

The PriSUD project aims to investigate the prevalence of substance abuse disorders among inmates in Norwegian, Swedish and Danish prisons. We  also examine the availability of adequate drug treatment in prison, as well as the outcome of such treatment after release in a Nordic context. 

Together with a number of partners, we work with several sub-projects focusing on screening, alcohol and drug use before and during imprisonment as well as various outcomes after imprisonment. 

Publications on the topic

Andersen, Synøve N., Jordan M. Hyatt, Philipp Lobmaier, Marianne Riksheim Stavseth, and Anne Bukten. "Leaving Their Drugs at the Gate? Exploring Changes in Drug Use From Before to During Incarceration in Norway." International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology (2023). doi: 10.1177/0306624X231168596

Tverborgvik, Torill., Stavseth, Marianne Riksheim & Bukten, Anne. "The association between drug use and mortality in a norwegian prison cohort: a prospective cohort study." Health Justice 11, 22 (2023).


Lokdam, Nicoline; Stavseth, Marianne Riksheim & Bukten, Anne. "Drug use and re-imprisonment: A prospective study of the Norwegian Offender Mental Health and Addiction (NorMA) cohort". Drug and Alcohol Dependence Reports (2022). doi: 10.1016/j.dadr.2022.100127.

Hilde Pape, Philipp Lobmaier, Anne Bukten. "An evaluation of eight short versions of the Drug Use Disorder Identification Test (DUDIT). A prison population study". Drug and Alcohol Dependence Reports, Volume 3 (2022).

doi: 10.1016/j.dadr.2022.100043.

Pape, Hilde, Rossow, Ingeborg, and Bukten, Anne. "Are Short Audit Screeners Effective in Identifying Unhealthy Drinking of Varying Severity? A Prison Population Study." Drug and Alcohol Dependence 229, (2021).​

Lindstad, Marianne, Skurtveit, Svetlana, and Bukten, Anne. "Too Much or Too Little Medicines? A National Study of Prescribed Psychotropic Drugs Among Inmates in Norwegian Prisons." Norwegian Epidemiology 29, no. 1-2 (2021).


Pape, Hilde, Rossow, Ingeborg, and Bukten, Anne. "Alcohol Problems among Prisoners: Subgroup Variations, Concurrent Drug Problems, and Treatment Needs." European Addiction Research 27, no. 3 (2021): 179-88.


Havnes, Ingrid Amalia, Bukten, Anne, Rognli, Eline Borger, and Muller, Ashley Elizabeth. "Use of Anabolic-Androgenic Steroids and Other Substances Prior to and During Imprisonment - Results from the Norwegian Offender Mental Health and Addiction (Norma) Study." Drug and Alcohol Dependence 217 (2020): 108255.

Bukten, Anne, Lund, Ingunn Olea, Kinner, Stuart A., Rognli, Eline Borger, Havnes, Ingrid Amalia, Muller, Ashley Elizabeth, and Stavseth, Marianne Riksheim. "Factors Associated with Drug Use in Prison – Results from the Norwegian Offender Mental Health and Addiction (Norma) Study." Health & Justice 8, no. 1 (2020): 10.

​Muller, Ashley Elizabeth, Havnes, Ingrid Amalia, Rognli, Eline Borger, and Bukten, Anne. "Inmates with Harmful Substance Use Increase Both Exercise and Nicotine Use during Incarceration." International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 15, no. 12 (2018): 2663.

Rognli, Eline Borger, Bramness, Jørgen G, Skurtveit, Svetlana, and Bukten, Anne. "Substance Use and Sociodemographic Background as Risk Factors for Lifetime Psychotic Experiences in a Non-Clinical Sample." Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment 74 (2017): 42-47.

Bukten, A; Lokdam, NT; Clausen, T; Skærvø I. Use, possession and driving under the influence of drugs among inmates in Norwegian prisons 2000-2019. SERAF report, 3/2021(pdf)


Bukten, A; Stavseth, MR; Skurtveit, S, Lund, IO; Clausen, T. Drug and health situation among inmates in correctional facilities. SERAF report, 2/2016 (pdf)

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