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November 1992

New Pharmacotherapies for Cocaine Dependence... Revisited

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry, University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Farmington.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1992;49(11):900-904. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1992.01820110064010

Over the past decade, a number of factors have served to focus national attention on the prospects for developing effective pharmacologic treatment to reduce cocaine dependence. The media, the general public, and its elected leaders became alarmed about the spread of cocaine use, abuse, and dependence.1 Traditional drug treatment programs reported that cocaine dependence was less amenable to established treatment strategies,2,3 while researchers cited animal data on the powerful reinforcing potency of the drug.4 The historical success of methadone maintenance treatment for heroin addiction, combined with a growing base of research on the neuropharmacology of cocaine, suggested that some new pharmacotherapy offered the best and most cost-effective hope for a seemingly intractable and growing problem. Knowledge of some of the residual effects of cocaine and/or stimulants in the central nervous system5-7 and of kindling phenomena related to repeated cocaine administration8 led to a number of

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