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April 27, 1957


JAMA. 1957;163(17):1622-1623. doi:10.1001/jama.1957.02970520056015

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Addiction has existed since man discovered that the juice of the poppy would relieve his ills, but the term as applied to drug use and recognition of the condition as a community problem are relatively modern, both following the introduction of the hypodermic syringe a little more than a century ago. "Drug habit" and "habit-forming" are much older terms. Intensive research into drug addiction is much more modern, inaugurated, or, rather, greatly accelerated, by the establishment of the first federal hospital for the treatment of drug addicts at Lexington, Ky., 20-odd years ago. Coincidently many attempts have been made to define addiction, emphasizing at one time or another pharmacological, psychiatric, legal, or practical aspects. Tatum, Seevers, and Collins in 1929 had already defined addiction and habituation separately. "Addiction," they said, "is that condition of mind and body induced by drugging which requires a continuation of that drug, and without which

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