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Thursday, December 6, 2012

New Treatment for Cocaine Addiction

Scientists are always searching for new more effective treatments for specific addictions. A new study may have found a more effective way to treat cocaine addiction, a method that might come as a surprise.

The study found that combining the anti-seizure drug topiramate with amphetamines may help treat cocaine addiction. Reports have found that topiramate has shown promise in treating nicotine and alcohol dependence, while amphetamines are used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, according to The Los Angeles Times. No single drug has been proven effective in treating cocaine addiction, the article notes.

39 people with cocaine dependence were given the drug combination for 120 days, while 42 received a placebo. People who took the drug combination were about twice as likely to be abstinent from cocaine use for three consecutive weeks (33 percent vs. 16.7 percent).

“The combination of mixed amphetamine salts and topiramate appears promising as a treatment for cocaine dependence,” the researchers from Columbia University and New York State Psychiatric Institute noted in a news release. “The positive results observed in this study need to be replicated in a larger, multicenter clinical trial. The findings also provide encouragement for the strategy of testing medication combinations, rather than single agents, for cocaine dependence.”
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