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October 2021

Mental disorders and the course of opiate dependence

Author(s): Degkwitz, P., Krausz, M.

Journal/Book: Psychiat Prax. 2000; 27: Rudigerstr 14, D-70469 Stuttgart, Germany. Georg Thieme Verlag. 77-85.

Abstract: The present study investigates the hypothesis of a relationship between mental disorders and symptoms on the one hand and the extent of drug consumption and the addiction-related problems of opiate dependents on the other hand. Methods: In a five-year follow-up study in Hamburg among 350 opiate dependents who, at the time of the initial survey, were in contact with the drug help system, 219 clients (63%) could be interviewed at Iso far) three different times of investigation. Standardised questionnaires like the EoropASI, CIDI, SCL-90-R, STAI and BDI were used for the interviews. Results: The general life situation of the surveyed persons has on the whole improved in the course of the last two to three years. Also the average drug consumption clearly decreased. Between mental disorders/disturbances and drug dependence or drug-related problems, a linear correlation could be found: An unfavourable course of mental disorders and symptoms correlates with a problematic current life situation of the client. There is also a global relationship between increased drug consumption and the emergence of mental symptoms like depressiveness and anxiety and the psychosocial functional level. Conclusions: The expected relationship between mental disturbances and the extent of drug consumption is not very marked. This is in support of the basic assumption that specific constellations of drug consumption and mental disorders do not exist isolated, but that they are related, as elements of a complex pattern, to the development of other areas of life.

Note: Article Verthein U, Univ Hamburg, Klin Psychiat & Psychotherapie, UKE, Martinistr 52, D-20246 Hamburg, GERMANY


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