Gabapentin in the Treatment of Cocaine Dependence: A Case Series
J Clin Psychiatry 2001;62(1):19-23
© Copyright 2017 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Background: Although multiple medications have
been studied for the treatment of cocaine dependence, no
medication has been shown to have a robust effect on craving and
use. This pilot project was designed to evaluate the safety and
tolerability of gabapentin in subjects with cocaine dependence.
Method: Thirty cocaine-dependent subjects
(DSM-IV criteria) were enrolled in an 8-week, open-label trial of
1200 mg/day of gabapentin in divided doses. Urine drug screens,
subjective measures of craving, and cocaine use interviews were
conducted at each weekly visit.
Results: Baseline rating of amount and frequency
of craving decreased significantly by week 8 (78% vs. 25% for
amount, p = .000; 74% vs. 23% for frequency, p = .004). Positive
urine drug screens for cocaine decreased from 86% at baseline to
29% at weeks 4 and 8. There were no reports of significant side
effects or adverse events.
Conclusion: This pilot study indicates that
gabapentin is safe and well tolerated and may be beneficial in
the treatment of cocaine dependence. A placebo-controlled trial
would be of interest.