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Int J Addict. 1975;10(1):13-21.

Outpatient vs hospital methadone detoxification: an experimental comparison.


This study compares the effectiveness and cost of hospital narcotic detoxificationand outpatient narcotic detoxification using methadone. Forty heroin addicts seeking narcotic withdrawal were randomly assigned to treatment groups. Methadone treatment was planned for no longer than 10 days while psychiatric supportive services were made available to continue as needed. The results suggest little benefit from either treatment approach and there was no significant differences between the treatments. Only a few patients achieved a drug-free state, and of those who did, all but one had returned to use of narcotics within 2 months. The data indicate that detoxification using methadone is a palliative procedure. The cost of outpatient detoxification can be accomplished for approximately one-tenth the cost of inhospital treatment without significantlyaltering the effectiveness of treatment.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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