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J Appl Behav Anal. 1991 Winter;24(4):657-65.

Contingent reinforcement of abstinence with individuals abusing cocaine and marijuana.

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  • 1University of Vermont, Burlington 05401.


Two males diagnosed with cocaine dependence received a behavioral intervention comprised of contingency management and the community reinforcement approach. During the initial phase of treatment, reinforcement was delivered contingent on submitting cocaine-free urine specimens. The community reinforcement approach involved two behavior therapy sessions each week. Almost complete cocaine abstinence was achieved, but regular marijuana use continued. During a second phase, reinforcement magnitude was reduced, but remained contingent on submitting cocaine-free specimens. Behavior therapy was reduced to once per week. Cocaine abstinence and regular marijuana use continued. Next, reinforcement was delivered contingent on submitting cocaine- and marijuana-free specimens. This modified contingency resulted in an abrupt increase in marijuana abstinence and maintenance of cocaine abstinence. One- and 5-month follow-ups indicated that cocaine abstinence continued, but marijuana smoking resumed. These results indicate that the behavioral intervention was efficacious in achieving abstinence from cocaine and marijuana; maintenance, however, was achieved for cocaine only.

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