Behavioral treatment + naltrexone reduces drug use and legal problems in the Republic of Georgia

Irma Kirtadze, David Otiashvili, Kevin E. O'Grady, Hendrée E. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Known drug users in the Republic of Georgia are 99% male. Georgian social context includes close family social structure, intense police scrutiny over daily life, and minimal social service infrastructure. Drug use is dangerous and individuals rely on family support to address socially stigmatizing problems. Objective: The aim was to examine the changes in problem severity over time experienced by 40 adult opioid-injecting men with drug-free female partners in the Republic of Georgia who participated in a randomized clinical trial examining the feasibility and efficacy of a 22-week comprehensive intervention that paired behavioral treatment with naltrexone. Methods: This secondary data analysis study examined the results from a project that had randomized participants to either a comprehensive intervention that paired behavioral treatment with naltrexone or usual care (UC) and examined changes in Addiction Severity Index (ASI) composite scores. Results: The comprehensive intervention showed three times the decline in ASI drug use and legal composite scores than did the UC condition in males in the Republic of Georgia, both p < .009. Conclusion: The results suggest that the use of a comprehensive behavioral intervention paired with naltrexone leads to significant reductions in drug use and legal problems in opioid-injecting males in the Republic of Georgia. Scientific Significance: A comprehensive intervention that paired behavioral treatment with naltrexone provides a promising approach to protect drug users against relapse and legal risks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-175
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Volume38
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2012

Keywords

  • Opioid dependence
  • Republic of Georgia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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