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Monday, October 21, 2013

Ritalin Treatment With Addiction

English: Ritalin (Australian packaging)
Prescribing narcotic medications for people who struggle with addiction has always proved challenging. There are two schools of thought regarding addicts with co-occurring disorders; some believe that it is acceptable to prescribe certain narcotics to recovering addicts, while others believe that under no circumstance should addicts be prescribed drugs with the potential for abuse.

A number of addicts who seek treatment, struggle with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a problem that is usually treated with stimulants like Adderall, Ritalin, or Concerta. Stimulants are easily abused and many health professionals steer clear of them when treating addiction. However, new research suggests that Ritalin can successfully treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in people with substance dependence, according to Medical Xpress.

ADHD is more common in people with addiction than the general population, the article notes. Swedish researchers found that if Ritalin is administered in higher doses, it works well in the treatment of ADHD with people with substance dependence.

Higher doses are required because standard doses are not effective in people with both ADHD and substance dependence due to a tolerance to the drugs, researchers said.

The effect of the medication was observed on 54 prison inmates who had ADHD and dependence on amphetamines for 24 weeks. Those given the drug had fewer relapses into drug use, fewer symptoms of ADHD, and adhered to their treatment for longer, compared with prisoners given a placebo.

“We’ve shown for the first time that ADHD in these patients is treatable,” lead author Dr Maija Konstenius of the Karolinska Institute said in a news release. “Moreover, the treatment led to fewer relapses to drug use, which is a very significant finding since a return to crime is often linked to drug abuse in this group.”

The findings are published in the journal Addiction.
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