Article

Short-ten,n outcomes of five heroin detoxification methods in the Australian NEPOD Project

National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia.
Addictive Behaviors (Impact Factor: 2.44). 04/2005; 30(3):443-56. DOI: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2004.06.002
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This study included 380 participants in five heroin detoxification trials whose data were pooled to enable direct comparison of five detoxification methods in the Australian National Evaluation of Pharmacotherapies for Opioid Dependence (NEPOD). Rapid detoxification achieved similar initial abstinence rates with either anaesthesia or sedation (average 59%), which were higher than was achieved by inpatient detoxification using clonidine plus other symptomatic medications (24%), which in turn was higher than outpatient detoxification using either buprenorphine (12%) or clonidine plus other symptomatic medications (4%). Older participants and those using more illicit drugs were more likely to achieve abstinence. Entry rates into ongoing postdetoxification treatment were as follows: buprenorphine outpatient (65%), sedation (63%), anaesthesia (42%), symptomatic outpatient (27%), and symptomatic inpatient (12%). Postdetoxification treatment with buprenorphine or methadone was preferred over naltrexone. Participants with more previous detoxification attempts were more likely to enter postdetoxification treatment. Given that outpatient detoxification was more effective with buprenorphine than with symptomatic medications and that rapid detoxification was more effective than the symptomatic inpatient method, the roles of the symptomatic methods should be reconsidered.

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    ABSTRACT: Since the number of drug users is increasing, applying a method of detoxification with fewer side effects during withdrawal from opioids and greater reliability seems to be necessary. In addition, without maintenance treatment, there will be limited success of treatment. This study aimed to compare success rates of detoxification with sublingual buprenorphine and clonidine and to evaluate addiction relapse in patients using naltrexone in a six-month follow-up. This double-blind trial was carried out on opioid dependent patients in a psychiatric hospital in Kerman (Iran) during 2007-09. The subjects were randomly selected from individuals who had referred for detoxification. They were allocated to two groups to receive either clonidine (n = 21) or buprenorphine (n = 14). The success rates of the two methods were assessed at the end of the course and patients were discharged while prescribed with 25 mg daily use of naltrexone. They were followed up for six months and the continuous use of naltrexone and relapse of substance abuse were evaluated. A total number of 35 patients entered the study. Success of detoxification with naltrexone was confirmed in all cases. One person (8.4%) in the clonidine group and no patient in the buprenorphine group had a clinical opiate withdrawal scale (COWS) score of more than 12 (P > 0.05). The mean levels of objective signs and subjective symptoms of withdrawal and the desire for drug abuse had significant reductions during detoxification period in both groups (P < 0.001). However, the difference in these variables between the two groups was not statistically significant (P > 0.05). Naltrexone was used for an average of one month in 43% and 64% of subjects in the clonidine and buprenorphine groups, respectively. In addition, 62% of patients in the clonidine group and 92.8% of subjects in the buprenorphine group received maintenance treatment. Nevertheless, the mean number of days staying in treatment was not significantly difference between the two groups (P > 0.05). Buprenorphine is as effective as clonidine in controlling withdrawal symptoms. A greater percentage of patients detoxified by buprenorphine received maintenance treatment, but there was not a significant difference in relapse rates between the two methods.
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    ABSTRACT: Objective The aim of the present study was to assess short-term ambulatory withdrawal management (AWM) outcomes at a drug health service (DHS) in Sydney, Australia, in the absence of specific funding. Methods A clinic file audit review was conducted of patients who commenced AWM at the service during January 2009-June 2011. Successful completion was defined as daily attendance with 1 missed day, or transfer onto opioid substitution treatment. Results Of 110 episodes, 69 (63%) were completed. Median patient age was 35 years (range 18-71 years), and most patients (68%) were male. Patients presented primarily for cannabis (33%) or alcohol (30%) withdrawal, followed by heroin (19%) or other opioids (6%), and benzodiazepines (12%). Completion rates varied from 86% for non-heroin opioids to 31% for benzodiazepines. Older age was associated with increased completion: 76% of those aged >35 years completed compared with 50% of those 35 years of age. Only 46% of women who commenced withdrawal management completed compared with 71% of men. Conclusions Most people commencing AWM at the DHS completed the program, indicating AWM can be performed at public drug and alcohol clinics. Service improvements may help increase completion rates among women and patients withdrawing from benzodiazepines. What is known about the topic? WM is not a standalone treatment for substance dependence, but is commonly a first attempt at treatment. AWM is often more acceptable to patients, and cheaper, than in-patient services. What does this paper add? About two-thirds of patients entering an AWM program operating since 2001 continue to complete the program. What are the implications for practitioners? AWM can be carried out successfully through public drug and alcohol services, although clinic staff support is important.
    Australian health review: a publication of the Australian Hospital Association 03/2014; 38(2). DOI:10.1071/AH13014 · 1.00 Impact Factor

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