Given the differences between general high school (GHS) and vocational high school (VHS) students, this study aimed to investigate the lifetime prevalence of non-medical use of prescription pain relievers (NMUPPR) among high school students as well as the associations between NMUPPR and individual-level factors and school category.
A cross-sectional study was conducted in GHS and VHS students in 2012 in Chongqing, and 11 906 students’ questionnaires were completed and qualified for the survey. Self-reported NMUPPR and information regarding individual-level determinants and school category were collected. A multilevel multivariate logistic regression model was fitted to explore independent predictors of NMUPPR.
The total lifetime prevalence of NMUPPR was 11.3%, and NMUPPR was more prevalent among VHS students (15.8%) compared with GHS students (9.8%). Overall, the results indicated that VHS students were more likely to be involved in NMUPPR (adjusted OR (AOR)=1.64, 95% CI 1.42 to 1.89). Regarding the individual-level predictors of NMUPPR, below-average family economic status was negatively correlated with NMUPPR (AOR=0.77, 95% CI 0.60 to 0.98), and students with more pocket money were more likely to be engaged in NMUPPR. Students who had difficult family relationships, had poor relationships with teachers, had parents or friends who engaged in non-medical prescription drug use, and considered or attempted suicide were more likely to be engaged in NMUPPR.