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National Household Survey on Drug Abuse, 1990 (ICPSR 9833)

Alternate Title:   NHSDA 1990

Principal Investigator(s): United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Institutes of Health. National Institute on Drug Abuse


This series measures the prevalence and correlates of drug use in the United States. The surveys are designed to provide quarterly, as well as annual, estimates. Information is provided on the use of illicit drugs, alcohol, anabolic steroids, and tobacco among members of United States households aged 12 and older. Questions include age at first use, as well as lifetime, annual, and past-month usage for the following drug classes: marijuana, inhalants, cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, alcohol, tobacco, and nonmedical use of psychotherapeutics. Respondents were also asked about problems resulting from their use of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco, their perceptions of the risks involved, insurance coverage, and personal and family income sources and amounts. Demographic data include gender, race, ethnicity, educational level, job status, income level, household composition, and population density.

Series: National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) Series

Access Notes


National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (NHSDA), 1990 - Download All Files (114.805 MB)
SAS    SPSS    Stata    ASCII    Excel/TSV
ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup    Stata Setup   
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Study Description


United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Institutes of Health. National Institute on Drug Abuse. National Household Survey on Drug Abuse, 1990. ICPSR09833-v5. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2013-05-06.

Persistent URL:

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)


This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Health and Human Services. Office of Public Health and Science (271-88-8310 )
  • Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    alcohol abuse, alcohol consumption, amphetamines, barbiturates, cocaine, drug abuse, drug use, drugs, hallucinogens, heroin, households, inhalants, marijuana, methamphetamine, prescription drugs, sedatives, smoking, stimulants, substance abuse, substance abuse treatment, tobacco use, tranquilizers, youths

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1990

Date of Collection:   

  • 1990-09--1991-02

Unit of Observation:    individual

Universe:    The population of the continuous United States, aged 12 and older, living in households.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Data were collected by Research Triangle Institute, Research Triangle Park, NC, and prepared for release by National Opinion Research Center, Chicago, IL.

For selected variables, statistical imputation was performed following logical imputation to replace missing responses. Unique code values were assigned to the recency-of-use variable when such logical imputation occurred. These code values are readily identifiable by the phrase "... LOGICALLY IMPUTED" or "... LOGICALLY ASSIGNED" in the code value descriptions.

Data were weighted based on the three stages of sampling that were used. The person-level sampling weight is the product of the three-stage sampling weights, each of which is equal to the inverse of the selection probability for that stage. Adjustments were made to compensate for nonresponse and sampling error. Adjustments also included trimming sample weights to reduce excessive weight variation and a post-stratification to Census population estimates.

To protect the anonymity of respondents, all variables that could be used to identify individuals have been deleted from the public use file.

For some drugs that have multiple names, questions regarding the use of that drug may be asked for each distinct name. For example, even though methamphetamine, methedrine and desoxyn are the same drug, their use was measured in three separate variables.


Sample:    Multistage area sample design with an oversampling of young people, minorities, and the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Data Source:

personal interviews, including self-enumerated answer sheets for questions on drugs

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Performed consistency checks.
  • Standardized missing values.
  • Created online analysis version with question text.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.

Restrictions: Users are reminded by the United States Department of Health and Human Services that these data are to be used solely for statistical analysis and reporting of aggregated information and not for the investigation of specific individuals or treatment facilities.


Original ICPSR Release:   1993-02-14

Version History:

  • 2013-05-06 Data collection instrument released.
  • 2008-07-25 New files were added. These files included one or more of the following: Stata setup, SAS transport (CPORT), SPSS system, Stata system, SAS supplemental syntax, and Stata supplemental syntax files, and tab-delimited ASCII data file. The variable CASEID was also added to the dataset.
  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.
  • 1999-03-18 The data file was reprocessed to recode missing values previously coded as "." to blanks. This will enable users to use the data in SPSS without modification. Also, SAS and SPSS data definition statements are now available for this study.
  • 1997-12-12 A machine-readable codebook in Portable Document Format (PDF) is now available.

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