A prospective study to investigate predictors of relapse among patients with opioid use disorder treated with methadone

Leen Naji, Brittany B. Dennis, Monica Bawor, Carolyn Plater, Guillaume Pare, Andrew Worster, Michael Varenbut, Jeff Daiter, David C. Marsh, Dipika Desai, Lehana Thabane, Zainab Samaan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations

Abstract

Introduction: Concomitant opioid abuse is a serious problem among patients receiving methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) for opioid use disorder. This is an exploratory study that aims to identify predictors of the length of time a patient receiving MMT for opioid use disorder remains abstinent (relapse-free).Methods: Data were collected from 250 MMT patients enrolled in addiction treatment clinics across Southern Ontario. The impact of certain clinical and socio-demographic factors on the outcome (time until opioid relapse) was determined using a Cox proportional hazard model.Results: History of injecting drug use behavior (hazard ratio (HR): 2.26, P = 0.042), illicit benzodiazepine consumption (HR: 1.07, P = 0.002), and the age of onset of opioid abuse (HR: 1.10, P < 0.0001) are important indicators of accelerated relapse among MMT patients. Conversely, current age is positively associated with duration of abstinence from illicit opioid use, serving as a protective factor against relapse (HR: 0.93, P = 0.003).Conclusion: This study helps to identify patients at increased risk of relapse during MMT, allowing health care providers to target more aggressive adjunct therapies toward high-risk patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9-18
Number of pages10
JournalSubstance Abuse: Research and Treatment
Volume10
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 10 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Methadone
  • Opioid relapse
  • Opioid substitution treatment
  • Opioid use disorder
  • Substance abuse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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