Stages of treatment for drug addicts in MEDLUX clinic
The first stage of treatment – presentation of the initial diagnosis
There are three main tools used for this:
- Anamnesis received from the patient himself, his relatives, friends, or law enforcement agencies.
- Clinical observation in a narcological hospital.
- Laboratory diagnostics (tests to detect drugs in urine).
The diagnosis of chemical dependence can be made on the basis of at least three criteria established in the International Classification of Diseases.
- The presence of pathological cravings (a strong irresistible desire to take a narcotic substance);
- Changes in the body’s reactivity: tolerance (characterized by the need for a significant increase in the dose of a substance to achieve the desired effect or a pronounced weakening of the effect with constant administration of the same dose); decrease or loss of control over the use of psychoactive substances;
- Withdrawal state or withdrawal symptoms (symptom complex of various mental, neurological, somatic disorders arising against the background of withdrawal or reduction in the dose of the substance);
- Continued use despite clear signs of harmful effects;
- A focus on substance use, which manifests itself in the fact that, in order to take the substance, they completely or partially abandon other important alternative forms of pleasure and interests, or that a lot of time is spent on activities related to obtaining and taking the substance and recovering from its effects.
The diagnosis “Addiction Syndrome” is presented by the VKK (medical advisory commission) as part of a narcologist, psychiatrist, neurologist or psychotherapist, if necessary.
Second stage of treatment – disintoxication of the body
Drug addiction treatment, with the aim of achieving sustained and long-term sobriety, always begins with detoxification (drug detoxification). This is necessary both to eliminate the drug itself from the body and the consequences of its prolonged and systematic use. Basically, for this, salt solutions are used (ringer lactate; hartman, trisol) to correct water-salt metabolism, eliminate dehydration of the body and acidosis (“acidification of the body”), as a result of any chronic intoxication.
Also, solutions are used that improve the rheological properties of blood and microcirculation (hydroxyethyl starch, gelatinol, dextran, pentoxifylline) that improve the supply of oxygen and glucose to the cells and tissues of the body (reamberin, lipoic acid, mildonium) multivitamins (vitamins of group B, nicotinic acid), vitamin E.
Third stage of treatment
Treatment of the patient’s somatic health status, as well as concomitant diseases and possible complications of the underlying drug addiction disease.
As a rule, very often there is chronic toxic or viral hepatitis (B or C, possibly together), cardiomyopathy (damage to the heart muscle), nephropathy (kidney damage), phlebitis, infiltrates (inflammation of blood vessels and tissues) in places from drug injections. Tuberculosis and HIV infection greatly aggravates the course of the main drug addiction disease. All this, in each specific case, obliges to revise the tactics of treating drug addicts, to carry out additional instrumental and laboratory studies, to invite doctors of other specialties (therapist, surgeon, neurologist, infectious disease specialist) for consultation.
Fourth stage of treatment
Stabilization of the psycho-emotional state is no less important stage than the relief of acute withdrawal symptoms.
It is on what the patient’s psychological and emotional state will be that will determine his further recovery on the way to long-term and stable sobriety. For this, a wide range of psychotropic drugs are used that can eliminate psychopathological symptoms (irritability, aggression, depressed mood, apathy, poor sleep). Antipsychotic drugs, antidepressants, anticonvulsants, nootropics, sleep and behavior correctors have proven their effectiveness. Their appointment is carried out in a hospital, and then under the supervision of a narcologist or psychiatrist in a rehabilitation center. At the next stage, the patient’s emotional background will change depending on his immersion in the psychotherapeutic process. For an effective process of personal change, the rehabilitation center uses time-tested approaches such as: cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy, gestalt, psychodrama, art therapy, kinesiotherapy.
The fifth stage of treatment – social adaptation or socialization
In other words, the patient’s ability to remain sober even under stress after undergoing a course of therapy. Find yourself in one or another professional activity, maintain good communication with people around you, completely change your circle of friends, priorities, system of values and beliefs. Continue to demonstrate the behavior of a mature and responsible person after completing a rehabilitation course. This can take a lot of time, from 3 months to 1 year; including day care, NA (Narcotics Anonymous) group visits, and one-to-one counseling.
Sixth stage of treatment – supporting, anti-recovery therapy
It uses both medical treatment and psychological methods. The long-acting naltrexone administration technique has proven itself well. To do this, use “Vivitrol”, an oil injection of naltrexone with a validity period of up to 1 month, or solid forms for surgical implantation, with a validity period of 3 months and up to a year.
It remains relevant to take naltrexone in tablets, liquid form (Antaxone) daily or according to the scheme prescribed by the narcologist (every other day; 5 times a week, etc.). Additionally, for 6 months or more, drugs can be prescribed that affect the background of the mood and behavior of the patient. Psychotherapeutic assistance aimed at maintaining remission includes both individual counseling for at least 1 year of sobriety, and group sessions in a day hospital.
Seventh stage of treatment
Counseling, psychocorrection of relatives and friends of a drug addicted patient.
The implementation of this stage begins from the moment the patient is admitted to the hospital. All relatives who, without exception, are codependent, are strongly encouraged to visit “parent groups”, the purpose of which is to give the most important and simple information about what dependence on psychoactive substances is, how it affects not only the patient himself, but his entire environment. What is codependency? And what changes are needed on the part of the patient’s parents so that his recovery is truly long and sustainabl
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