Appreciations and analyses of seminal studies of lasting significance from the past starting with the analyses most recently added or updated, totalling today 40 documents. Dates in orange refer to publication date of the original study or (if several) of the earliest of the studies. For other seminal studies see those listed in the cells of the alcohol and drug treatment matrices
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STUDY 1965 PDF file 207Kb
Methadone maintenance: the original
In the mid-60s even its originators doubted whether methadone maintenance could work when everything else had failed, gnawing their nails as they waited for patients to return from the temptations outside the ward. What they saw instead was a 'miraculous' transformation.
REVIEW 1988 PDF file 784Kb
Hepatitis C and needle exchange part 3: the British record
Reveals the paucity of evidence that exchanges in Britain have directly reduced risk behaviour or infection spread, and the hidden flaw in the seminal pilot study. Lack of real impact is probably less the problem than lack of real evidence of impact.
REVIEW 1992 PDF file 1826Kb
Hepatitis C and needle exchange part 2: case studies
Six case studies show how the complex balance of exchange services can be disrupted, leaving hepatitis C and HIV spreading rapidly. Common themes are resource starvation, local hostility, counterproductive restrictions and a non-interventionist ethic. Includes influential early studies dating from 1992.
REVIEW 1980 PDF file 925Kb
Controversial, expensive, yet promising so much, interest is increasing in prescribing heroin to heroin addicts. Just five studies hold what answers there are to whether this can work, including a probably unrepeatable early British study.
STUDY 1997 PDF file 1321Kb
The grand design: lessons from DATOS
US drug treatment was under fire, over-stretched and facing the new challenge of crack cocaine when the huge DATOS study set out to test whether it was still delivering benefits, how it worked, and how it could be made better. Truly essential reading.
STUDY 1969 PDF file 446Kb
In 1969 a groundbreaking study established the benzodiazepines as the treatment of choice for preventing life-threatening complications from alcohol withdrawal. Expert commentary on the study plus the reflections of the original researcher.
STUDY 1986 PDF file 763Kb
Disulfiram treatment of alcoholism
A reminder of the landmark study which galvanised researcher to investigate how disulfiram can be made to work and pioneered methodologies capable of delivering clinically useful answers. Expert commentary plus the reflections of the original researcher.
STUDY 2000 PDF file 99Kb
How dependent drug users in Scotland avoided relapse
Scottish study provides valuable clues to where anti-relapse interventions might focus. Predated by many years the recovery era in British policy but laid some of the foundations for its shift in emphasis from the psychological or biochemical grip of addiction to lifestyle change which breaks with the past satisfyingly enough to forge a positive, non-addict identity and prevent relapse.
REVIEW 1990 PDF file 2709Kb
Overdosing on opiates part I: causes
The most thorough review to date of the greatest risk posed by illegal drug use in Britain. An international team of authors analyses the causes and finds they go way beyond just taking too much. Includes in the “The Swedish experience” on p. 6 of PDF early studies which established methadone’s lifesaving potential.
STUDY 1977 PDF file 581Kb
Force in the sunshine state
Early in the 1960s administrative blunders in California paved the way for what remains the most convincing test of court-ordered treatment. The mistakes created a near-perfect yet natural control group against which to compare outcomes.
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