Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Candid Comments on AA and “Rehab”

Candid comments on AA and “rehab” - an article in Washington Post 8 Aug is headlined, “We're addicted to rehab. It doesn't even work”. The author, Dr. B. A. Johnson, is chairman of psychiatry and neurobehavioral sciences at the University of Virginia. Dr. Johnson concludes as follows: “When any other illness causes great suffering, our society devotes time and money and effort to studying it and to developing treatments that are empirically found to work. Alcoholism and drug addiction should be no exception. Recent advances in neuroscience have led to a greater understanding of how alcohol and other drugs affect the brain. They have, in turn, allowed medical researchers, myself included, to begin to approach alcohol dependence as we would any other disease: by searching for effective medicine.”

For the full story click here

(Dr. Johnson states by way of disclosure that he has "served as a paid consultant to pharmaceutical companies developing medications to treat alcoholism")

This is a thought-provoking (and courageous!) article. Alas, it is sobering (!) to note that even when “effective medicine” for dependence has been identified it is all too often rejected by medical professionals and the general society alike. Methadone for the maintenance treatment of opiate dependence is a case in point.


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