Gabapentin Reduces Cocaine Use Among Addicts From a Community Clinic Sample
J Clin Psychiatry 2004;65(1):84-86
© Copyright 2014 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Background: Individuals with chronic
psychiatric conditions display a high rate of cocaine use.
Gabapentin was hypothesized to reduce cocaine use by restoring
inhibitory GABAergic feedback on ascending dopaminergic
projections to nucleus accumbens neurons.
Method: Nine participants with DSM-IV
cocaine dependence were selected from patients attending a large
community psychiatric clinic. During a 24-week open-label trial
of gabapentin (800-2400 mg/day), qualitative urine drug screens
were collected from the participants up
to 3 times per week. Data were collected from
September 1999 to May 2001.
Results: With gabapentin, the mean ± SD number
of cocaine-positive urine screens decreased from 53.11 ± 13.23
to 35.22 ± 14.84 (t = 3.58, N = 9, p < .01). The number of
weeks of abstinence from cocaine increased from 2.1 ± 1.5 to 8.0
± 5.5 (t = 3.21, N = 9, p < .01).
Conclusion: Gabapentin appeared to be a safe and
efficacious medication to reduce cocaine usage in a community
sample of psychiatric patients.