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Rev Esp Salud Publica. 2019 Aug 26;93. pii: e201908048.

[Aging in a methadone maintenance program. A perspective from the framework of social determinants of health].

[Article in Spanish; Abstract available in Spanish from the publisher]

Author information

Centro de Atención a las Adicciones de Latina. Instituto de Adicciones. Madrid Salud. Madrid. España.
Departamento de Enfermería. Facultad de Medicina de la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Madrid. España.
Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria Puerta de Hierro (IDIPHISA). Majadahonda. Madrid. España.
Grupo de Investigación Cualitativa en Salud. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (GIQS-UAM). Madrid. España.
Instituto Interuniversitario "Investigación avanzada sobre evaluación de la Ciencia y la Universidad (INAECU). Getafe. Madrid. España.


in English, Spanish


People on methadone treatment have increased their life expectancy, aging prematurely with comorbidities. The objective of this study was to know the sociodemographic and clinical profile of these people in the Center for Addiction Care in the district of Latina (belonging to Madrid Salud), as well as the perception of the influence of the treatment on their aging. The Social Determinants of Health Model was used as a framework.


A mixed methodology was used in two phases: a quantitative one, to describe the sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of the study population; and another qualitative one, through semi-structured interviews to an intentional sample, to explore the history of life and the perception of future needs regarding the health of the participants.


The results highlighted that the average age of the sample was 48.28 years, that they were mostly men (81.25%), of Spanish origin, with a low level of education and economics and with a medium stay in treatment with methadone of ± 13 years. An increase in mental pathologies was found the more years they had been in the program, as well as, at a lower age of onset in consumption, the presence of HIV and Hepatitis C virus increased. In their speeches it was found that the social determinants of Health have conditioned its vital history.


Both consumption and methadone contribute to its stigmatization, not favoring its normalized inclusion in society and determining a high state of vulnerability. This increases as age does, not receive adequate resources to meet their future needs.


Aging; Chronicity; HIV; Methadone; Social determinants of health; Spain; Stigma; Vulnerability

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