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Opiate dependence and pregnancy: 20-year follow-up study

  • Marie Whitty (a1) and John O'Connor (a2)
Abstract
AIMS AND METHOD

This study examined the 20-year outcome of 55 women who were pregnant and using opiates in 1985 and were attending the Drug Treatment Centre and Advisory Board, Dublin. We established outcome across a number of variables, including mortality, psychiatric and physical morbidity, psychosocial functioning, ongoing drug misuse and outcome of offspring.

RESULTS

At 20-year follow-up 29 women (53%) were deceased. HIV was the commonest cause of death, accounting for 17 deaths (59%). Those who were alive at follow-up displayed high rates of unemployment (84%), illicit substance misuse (74%) and most were dependent on state-subsidised accommodation (78%).

CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS

Mortality was higher in our group compared with other long-term follow-up samples. These findings suggest that such participants and their offspring require intensive long-term support and treatment.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Opiate dependence and pregnancy: 20-year follow-up study

  • Marie Whitty (a1) and John O'Connor (a2)
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