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Heroin dependence in an English town: 33-year follow-up

  • Nehkant H. Rathod (a1), W. Mary Addenbrooke (a1) and Alan F. Rosenbach (a2)

Abstract

Background

There has been no long-term study of people addicted to injected heroin who have been treated without the prescribing of substitute opioids.

Aims

To investigate the outcome for patients treated for injected heroin addiction 33 years after they were first seen, and 26 years after they were first followed up, in terms of sustained abstinence, continuing maintenance on methadone and deaths.

Method

Eighty-six people with heroin addiction first seen in 1966–1967 in a small town in the south-east of England were located and their clinical state assessed using multiple sources, including personal interviews with a proportion of the cohort.

Results

Forty-two per cent of the cohort had been abstinent for at least 10 years; 10% were taking methadone and were classified as addicted; and 22% had died. Eight per cent of the cohort could not be located.

Conclusions

Results proved favourable in the above three parameters compared with other long-term studies.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Dr N. H. Rathod, Corsletts Farm, Broadbridge Heath, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 3LD, UK. E-mail: rajrathod@onetel.com

Footnotes

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Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes

References

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Heroin dependence in an English town: 33-year follow-up

  • Nehkant H. Rathod (a1), W. Mary Addenbrooke (a1) and Alan F. Rosenbach (a2)

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Heroin dependence in an English town: 33-year follow-up

  • Nehkant H. Rathod (a1), W. Mary Addenbrooke (a1) and Alan F. Rosenbach (a2)
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