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J Addict Dis. 2006;25(3):15-25.

Adolescent and young adult heroin patients: drug use and success in methadone maintenance treatment.

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  • 1Rockefeller University, USA. scott.kellogg@nyu.edu


This study examined the impact of methadone maintenance treatment on an inclusive group of adolescent and young adult opiate-dependent patients, ages 15-23, admitted over a 6-year period, during their first year in the program. Retention in treatment was the primary outcome variable, and at 12 months, 48% were still in treatment. The findings were: (a) a stepwise discriminant function analysis revealed that patients who consistently used heroin were at a greater risk of leaving treatment within the first 12 months; (b) the use of cocaine was an indicator of higher levels of heroin use in those who reached the one-year mark; (c) among patients who stayed in treatment for one year, there was a significant reduction in heroin use, a trend toward a reduction in cocaine use, and no significant impact on benzodiazepine use; and (d) the group that stayed in treatment was slightly younger than the group that left before the first year ended. There were no gender or ethnic differences between the two groups. Suggestions for interventions that might improve treatment outcome are presented.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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