Indexed on: 24 Aug '99Published on: 24 Aug '99Published in: Neuropsychopharmacology
The subjective and physiological effects of repeated smoked cocaine self-administration were compared in 11 men and 9 women. Twice a day, on 2 consecutive days, participants smoked up to six 50-mg doses of cocaine base, at 14 min intervals. Men and women self-administered a similar number of cocaine doses (21.7 and 21.6, respectively). The most striking sex difference was that women had higher cocaine plasma concentrations than men (632.7 ng/ml vs. 376.7 mg/ml) after the sixth cocaine dose of the first session. After the first cocaine dose, women reported that they would spend significantly less for the dose than men ($1.58 vs. $3.15). Although cocaine produced similar effects in men and women 4 min after each dose, 15 min after the last dose of the session, heart rate and blood pressure remained elevated in women, but ratings of "I want cocaine" were lower in women as compared to men. Thus, smoking cocaine produced similar acute subjective effects in men and women, but prolonged cardiovascular effects and higher cocaine plasma concentrations in women.