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STUDY 1999 PDF file 217Kb
Buprenorphine safer than methadone for less dependent patients
Two European studies suggest that compared to methadone, more patients drop out if buprenorphine is used to maintain opiate addicts but also that a substantial proportion are retained and sustain abstinence from illegal opiates.
Further evidence from Iran that rapid withdrawal from opioids under anaesthesia followed by the opioid-blocking drug naltrexone can work for highly motivated caseloads with copious 'recovery capital'. For others this expensive and when not adequately controlled, potentially risky procedure generally ends in overdose-threatening relapse.
REVIEW 2000 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 2000 PDF file 187Kb
Buprenorphine advances offer safer maintenance therapy for heroin addiction
Implications of the first truly double-blind comparison of buprenorphine tablets versus methadone and the first trial of whether the buprenorphine/naloxone tablet (intended to deter misuse by injection) remains effective if taken every other day.
REVIEW 2001 PDF file 1041Kb
Overdosing on opiates part II: prevention
Based on a painstaking analysis of the causes of opiate overdose, an international team investigate ways to curb the increasing death rate. Key message: the deaths are preventable, and preventing them is within our reach. All it takes is some stretching.
STUDY 2001 PDF file 98Kb
Opiate detoxification: spending more may save long term
British study suggests that inadequately supervised outpatient programmes may be a waste of money and that costly specialist inpatient programmes are not necessarily more costly per abstinent outcome, but methodological flaws cloud the picture.
STUDY 2001 PDF file 188Kb
Outcomes from GP methadone maintenance in Britain match those from specialist clinics
Findings from Liverpool make a valuable addition to a limited UK evidence base confirming that outcomes from addiction treatment by well-supported GPs are at least as good as those achieved by specialist clinics.
REVIEW 2001 PDF file 193Kb
Methadone shades buprenorphine for outcomes but safety could tip the balance
Two meta-analyses combining the results of studies comparing buprenorphine with methadone for the treatment of opiate dependence found little difference in outcomes, suggesting that selection can be based on patient preference, safety and cost.
STUDY 2001 PDF file 274Kb
Antabuse reduces cocaine and alcohol use among opiate maintenance patients
Regular alcohol and cocaine use are common among opiate dependent patients and only partially (if at all) affected by opioid maintenance treatment; US studies suggest that disulfiram can curb use of both these drugs among maintenance patients.
REVIEW 2002 PDF file 1258Kb
There is an alternative: buprenorphine maintenance
A team led by one of the most respected authorities in the world on drug-based treatments for opiate dependence assesses the evidence for a drug emerging as the most promising alternative to methadone.
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