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Psychiatr Q. 2001 Summer;72(2):191-5.

Clonidine abuse among opiate addicts.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Illinois Chicago, School of Medicine, NPI 521, M/C 913, 912 South Wood St., Chicago, IL 60612, USA.



To determine if clonidine abuse among non-pregnant opiate dependent individuals is common and the reason for such use.


Self report of personal use or knowledge of others' use of this drug.


Fourteen of fifteen treatment seeking individuals with opiate dependence knew of clonidine abuse. Ten had used it personally to decrease the amount of heroin necessary to achieve a desired effect and to prolong the length of the opiate's action.


Clonidine abuse among opiate addicts may be more common than previous studies have suggested. Opiate addicts should be screened for abuse of this substance, especially in view of its widespread use for the purpose of opiate withdrawal. Further, such patients should be warned of potential health hazards attendant upon clonidine use and abrupt cessation.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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