Home > In-patient treatment of opiate dependence: medium-term follow-up outcomes.

Smyth, Bobby P and Barry, Joseph and Lane, Alison and Cotter, Amanda and O'Neill, M and Quinn, Catherine and Keenan, Eamon (2005) In-patient treatment of opiate dependence: medium-term follow-up outcomes. British Journal of Psychiatry , 187 , pp. 360-365.

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Background: The outcome for opiate-dependent patients seeking abstinence is unclear in this era of improved access to methadone maintenance.

Aims: To measure the outcome 2-3 years after in-patient treatment.

Method: Opiate-dependent patients admitted with a goal of abstinence were followed-up. A structured interview examined drug use and treatment in the preceding month.

Results: Five patients had died and 109 (76%) of the remaining 144 were interviewed. Fifty per cent (54 patients) reported recent opiate misuse and 57% (62) were on methadone maintenance. Twenty-three per cent (25 patients) were abstinent (i.e. neither using opiates nor on methadone maintenance). Abstinence was significantly associated with completion of the 6-week in-patient treatment programme and attendance at out-patient after-care, and negatively associated with a family history of substance misuse.

Conclusions: Abstinence remains an attainable goal. As the principal influence on outcome was treatment adherence, inpatient services should seek to enhance rates of programme completion. After-care should be provided to patients. We caution against use of pre-treatment patient characteristics as criteria for prioritising access to in-patient treatment.


Item Type:Article
Date:2005
Page Range:pp. 360-365
Publisher:The Royal College of Psychiatrists
Volume:187
EndNote:View
Accession Number:HRB 3041 (Electronic Only)
Related URLs:
Subjects:HJ Treatment method > Treatment outcome
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Health care programme or facility > Substance disorder treatment unit
VA Geographic area > Europe > Ireland
B Substances > Opioids (opiates)
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Residential facility

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