Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Former Substance Abusers Rarely Relapse After Organ Transplantation

Date:
February 5, 2008
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
Only about 6 percent of former alcoholics and 4 percent of former illicit drug users will relapse into their addictions in any given year following an organ transplant. Substance abuse can lead to serious organ diseases for which transplantation is increasingly considered an acceptable treatment.

Only about 6 percent of former alcoholics and 4 percent of former illicit drug users will relapse into their addictions in any given year following an organ transplant.

Related Articles


Substance abuse can lead to serious organ diseases for which transplantation is increasingly considered an acceptable treatment. Still, the transplant community remains concerned about these patients resuming their harmful behaviors once the transplant has been done.

Studies have suggested vast disparities in the prevalence of addiction relapse after transplantation, so researchers, led by Mary Amanda Dew of the University of Pittsburgh, conducted a meta-analysis of the existing literature. They sought to establish precise estimates of the rates of alcohol and drug relapse in individuals receiving liver or other solid organ transplants. They also looked for associations between relapse and many pre-transplant or psychosocial characteristics.

The researchers included 54 studies (all but four pertaining to liver recipients) that described more than 3600 former substance abusers who had received transplants. They examined the following post transplant outcomes: alcohol relapse, heavy alcohol use, illicit drug relapse, tobacco use, non adherence to immunosuppressants and nonadherence to clinic appointments.

The average rate for alcohol relapse was 5.6, or approximately 6 cases per 100 persons per year of observation (PPY). The average rate for relapse to heavy alcohol use was 2.5 per 100 PPY. The average relapse to illicit drug use was 3.7 PPY. The average relapse rates for the other studied outcomes ranged from 2 to 10 cases per 100 PPY.

Due to the amount of data available, relapse risk factors could only be assessed for alcohol use. While demographics and pre-transplant characteristics showed little correlation with relapse, poor social support, family alcohol history and pre-transplant abstinence of less than 6 months showed small but significant associations with relapse.

"Future research should focus on improving the prediction of risk for substance abuse relapse, and on testing interventions to promote continued abstinence post-transplant," the authors conclude.

An accompanying editorial by Michael Lucey and colleagues of the University of Wisconsin Medical School et al. congratulates Dew et al "for their outstanding effort to analyze alcohol and drug use after transplantation," while noting that, "for the addiction specialist, the persistence of sobriety after transplantation is surprising and unexplained."

They call for future studies with prospective designs that also separate study personnel from transplant personnel to better identify alcohol and drug relapse, since patients may otherwise conceal their behavior. Further, they conclude based on Dew et al's findings, "we need future studies that confront the issue of the suitability for transplantation of patients with duration of abstinence shorter than six months."

These results are published in the February issue of Liver Transplantation, a journal by John Wiley & Sons.

Article: "Meta-analysis of risk for relapse to substance use after transplantation of the liver or other solid organs." Dew, Mary Amanda; DiMartini, Andrea; Steel, Jennifer; De Vito Dabbs, Annette; Myaskovsky; Larissa; Unruh, Mark; Greenhouse, Joel. Liver Transplantation; February 2008.

Editorial: "Addictive behavior after solid organ transplantation: What do we know already and what do we need to know?" Lucey, Michael; Tome, S.; Said, Adnan. Liver Transplantation; February 2008.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "Former Substance Abusers Rarely Relapse After Organ Transplantation." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 February 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080204111816.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2008, February 5). Former Substance Abusers Rarely Relapse After Organ Transplantation. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080204111816.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "Former Substance Abusers Rarely Relapse After Organ Transplantation." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080204111816.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Harvard researchers found children whose mothers were exposed to high pollution levels in the third trimester were twice as likely to develop autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Yoga can help your weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and heart just as much as biking and walking does, a new study suggests. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins