As a GP in inner-city Glasgow in the 1990s, I looked after patients with heroin addiction. I got to know many of them well, I knew their families, I immunised their children and, distressingly, I saw some of them die. Because of the nature of general practice, I saw the dreadful impact of those deaths … Continue reading Choice in addiction treatment
In a compelling study from Dublin, Paula Mayock and Shane Butler (Trinity College) make the point that little is known about the stigma experienced by individuals attending drug treatment services over prolonged periods. They explored this through the lived-experience narratives of 25 people prescribed long-term methadone. Their findings ‘reveal the intersection of stigma with age … Continue reading Growing older and more stigmatised on methadone
The feds recently published an article touting the long-term success of buprenorphine: In the first long-term follow-up of patients treated with buprenorphine/naloxone (Bp/Nx) for addiction to opioid pain relievers, half reported that they were abstinent from the drugs 18 months after starting the therapy. After 3.5 years, the portion who reported being abstinent had risen … Continue reading Optimism? Or, is it low expectations?
About that Huffington Post article covering Obama's addiction speech a few weeks ago. ALLEGATION FACT FACT A Huffington Post investigation published in January found that the treatment industry overwhelmingly resists a medication-assisted model based on decades-old beliefs about sobriety that have been passed down by those in recovery, but have never been rigorously tested. Suboxone is the number 39 … Continue reading Don’t believe the hype
Start with the premise that opiate addicts don't get well. (Unless they're doctors.) Perform a study offering only two variations of your preferred treatment. (Cheap and crime reducing.) One is high dose or long duration and the other low dose or short duration. Do not offer a recovery oriented option at all, or offer a … Continue reading How methadone research works