Combination treatment may help depressed alcoholics

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Folks at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia are boasting some encouraging findings for patients with co-occurring depression and alcoholism. According to a study published online in the American Journal of Psychiatry, a triple combination of SSRI, opioid and talk therapy is highly successful in treating alcoholics with depression. Specifically, combining sertraline (Zoloft) and naltrexone (opioid antagonist) in conjunction with talk therapy achieved abstinence for a median of 98 days in 53.7% of alcoholic and depressed patients. Helen M. Pettinati, PhD, of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues, commenting, wrote, “The present findings suggest that patients with both disorders would benefit from combination treatment with an antidepressant and medication for alcohol dependence.” Click here to read an article from Business Week that discusses this study more.

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