New meta-analysis finds methadone better than buprenorphine for treatment retention in opioid dependence


Ian Hamilton considers a new Lancet Psychiatry systematic review and meta-analysis that examines the effectiveness of buprenorphine versus methadone for the treatment of opioid dependence, drawing from observational and randomised controlled studies.

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Opioid Agonist Treatment associated with 50% lower risk of mortality, but political epiphany still needed to reduce drug-related deaths

person being helped from pill bottle by healthcare provider - addiction recovery concept

Ian Hamilton appraises a systematic review and meta-analysis on the association of opioid agonist treatment with all-cause mortality and specific causes of death among people with opioid dependence.

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Does opioid antagonist medication improve the core features of autism spectrum conditions in children?

boy with autism

Emma Langley looks at a systematic review of the effectiveness of the use of opioid antagonist medication in attenuating core symptoms of autism spectrum conditions in children

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Can self-injurious behaviour be reduced by medication in individuals with intellectual disabilities?


Self injurious behaviour in people with learning disabilities, as well as causing physical harm, can have a major impact on quality of life. It is not entirely clear why people engage in self injurious behaviours, but one theory suggests that it may be connected with an opiate euphoria. If this is so, it might be that medications that blocked these opiates might impact on levels of SIB.

Here, Rachel Allen looks at a systematic review that set out to address that question.

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