Corroboration of drug abusers' self-reports through the use of multiple data sources

Stephen A. Maisto, Linda C. Sobell, Mark B. Sobell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Multiple data sources were used to evaluate the validity of 31 drug abusers' self-reports of recent drug use as well as related behaviors occurring 1 year before and 1 year immediately after admission to a drug-free therapeutic community. Interviews were conducted by individuals not associated with the program. At the initial interview subjects provided a breath test for alcohol and a urine sample to test for other recent drug use. Subjects also signed releases of information so that official records could be checked both before and after admission to treatment to document any hospitalizations, arrests, drug treatment facility stays, and driver's license suspensions or revocations. These multiple data checks showed that drug abusers' self-reports of recent alcohol and drug use and of arrests and hospitalizations over a 2-year period are sufficiently valid for use in treatment outcome research. When differences occurred, it was usually due to subjects reporting more events than appeared on the records.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-308
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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