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Potential Drug Treatment for Alcoholism
A drug currently approved to treat bipolar disorder and schizophrenia may play a role in the treatment of alcoholism. The drug is called aripiprazole (Abilify); researchers say more research is needed, but this first study found the drug helps lessen the euphoric effects of alcohol.
Aripiprazole is a dopamine partial agonist, so it works differently in the body than other dopamine drugs. Study authors say the drug has different effects at different dose levels, so it is important to give the right amount of the drug to achieve the right results.
For the study, researchers recruited 18 social drinkers — nine men and nine women. Each participant completed three sessions in which they were given no medication, or 2.5 milligrams or 10 milligrams of aripiprazole. Then they were given three drinks and researchers measured their breath alcohol concentrations, heart rate, blood pressure, body sway and other subjective effects.
“Findings show that aripiprazole made the drinkers sleepier and they experienced less pleasure from alcohol than they might have without it,” says Henry Kranzler, a professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of Connecticut Health Center. Study authors say this is just preliminary research but one benefit might be that aripiprazole may be more tolerated than other drugs, causing fewer side effects. But researchers say that is still not proven and additional studies need to happen to determine if aripiprazole is a potential treatment for alcoholism.
_________ source: Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, 2008;32:573-578
Alcoholism, like many addictions, is a disease of reinforcement. When you take drugs or alcohol, you feel better and when you stop drinking, you miss the feeling. By this same mechanism, the people you associate with can start to reinforce your drinking behavior. Even though, for many, alcoholism ends up being a disease of solitude….
Drug and Alcohol Taskforce members presented the Youth Risk Behavior Survey to the Gilford School Board Monday night and said they found certain trends and statistics to be alarming. Gilford selectmen were also invited to sit in on the presentation, along with the town administrator and Gilford police officers. High school nurse and taskforce member….
If I went to my doctor with a set of symptoms, no one would question the fact that I was sick. No one would impose a moral judgment on me for having those symptoms, and I wouldn’t be viewed as a law breaker for being ill. But many people reject the idea of addiction as….
Like a stereotypical drunk searching in vain for a bottle that’s around here somewhere, it turns out that many Canadians have a hard time understanding exactly what happened to the liquor that they bought. A new study for the University of Victoria’s Centre for Addictions Research, based on a national telephone survey of 13,909 people,….
“Narcotics anonymous” is a non-profit organization, whose members recover from their addiction meeting regularly to share their experiences of recovery with others. In general, the senior members of this organization individually help the new members. Anyone with a desire to give up his or her addiction is free to join this organization. The funds are….