This study evaluated rates of cannabis use and the effectiveness of an adaptive stepped care intervention for reducing cannabis use in methadone maintenance patients. Patients testing cannabis positive during a 6-month baseline were advanced to more weekly counseling (up to 9 hours per week) until producing four consecutive weeks of cannabis- and other drug-negative urine samples. Patients were followed up for 1 year. Continued access to uninterrupted methadone delivery was ultimately contingent upon attending scheduled counseling and achieving abstinence from all drug use. The results showed that 18% of the clinic census (n = 57) tested positive for cannabis. The effectiveness of the intervention was assessed for 15 patients testing positive for cannabis exclusively. Ten of these patients (67%) discontinued cannabis use prior to the intervention and remained at reduced care. Four of the five patients who were advanced to higher steps of care ultimately discontinued cannabis use; one left treatment against medical advice. The results suggest that motivated stepped care is an effective intervention for reducing cannabis use.
A stepped care approach for reducing cannabis use in opioid-dependent outpatients. / Kidorf, Michael; Neufeld, Karin; King, Van L.; Clark, Michael; Brooner, Robert K.In: Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, Vol. 32, No. 4, 01.06.2007, p. 341-347.
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