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August 7, 1967

Drug Addiction and Logic

Author Affiliations

Yorktown Heights, NY

JAMA. 1967;201(6):491-492. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130060165030

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To the Editor:—  It is quite evident that conventional methods and, for that matter, even radical means have not provided a real solution to the problem of addiction. Finding a "logical" answer to this enigma has not evolved to date. Perhaps this lack of success has been due to our eagerness to find a logical solution to a problem which cannot be approached by conventional logic. All forms of behavior ultimately can be explained. It may very well be, however, that certain facets in in the behavior of the addict may lend themselves to explanation only at a molecular level. If this is true, then it is not unreasonable to assume that addictive behavior could have components which are nonrational in nature.Psychiatry can interpret the "needle," the ceremony of the "fix," and the premorbid personality of the heroin addict. Alcohol and food addictions have their own spectrum of interpretations.