In 2005, Nature Neuroscience published a special issue on the neuroscience of addiction that summarized the advancements in unraveling the biological mechanisms that contribute to the etiology and progression of addiction to a wide spectrum of psychoactive drugs.  The technical papers included in the 2005 special issue stood as a progress report on the biological(……)

“…a disease needs to be transformed politically before it can be transformed scientifically.” –Siddhartha Mukherjee, The Emperor of All Maladies (A Biography of Cancer) Ladies and Gentlemen,        As you are quickly discovering, the effects of opioid addiction on individuals, families, and communities will be a recurring issue in the 2016 Presidential campaign.(……)

Dr. Yih-Ing Hser and her colleagues (Elizabeth Evans, Christine Grella, Walter Ling, and Douglas Anglin) have just published an important review—Long-Term Course of Opioid Addiction–in the Harvard Review of Psychiatry.  Findings from their review of 28 long-term studies of opioid addiction that have particular relevance for addiction professionals, recovery support specialists, and recovery advocates include(……)

There is a near universal principle in medicine suggesting that the earlier the treatment of a health problem begins, the better the prognosis for full and sustained recovery.  Whether one suffers from traumatic injury, infectious disease, or such oft chronic conditions as diabetes, hypertension, and addiction; the timing of treatment initiation matters. Research scientists have(……)

2015 marks the 25th anniversary of passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)—landmark legislation that stands as a historic milestone in reversing the longstanding social exclusion and segregation of people with disabilities. The ADA dramatically changed the lives of people with disabilities and altered community life in remarkable ways.  The ADA, the regulations through(……)

Over the past two centuries, addiction recovery has been understood as primarily an intrapersonal process, though recent decades have witnessed growing interest in the related concepts of family recovery and community recovery. Technologies to promote recovery have targeted the individual with only token interest in interventions in larger social networks.  Three provocative discoveries challenge this(……)

There is a boundary between addiction and recovery that marks the point of reciprocal passage between these two physical, psychological, and cultural worlds.  This edge of recovery can be friend or enemy—friend when approached close enough during active addiction to hear its welcoming call, and enemy, when during recovery, we drift close enough to this(……)

“There is nothing about a caterpillar which would suggest that it will become a butterfly” – Buckminster Fuller Much of the literature on addiction recovery is focused on the past.  Recovery is portrayed through the dominant images of a prolonged addiction downfall and an equally prolonged process of retrieving those lost assets.  In reading such literature,(……)

Leonard Campanello, former narcotics officer and now Chief of Police in Gloucester, Massachusetts, has recently proposed three provocative ideas:  1) stop arresting people solely for their status as addicts, 2) establish the police department as a safe haven where people with substance-related problems can get linked to effective treatment and recovery support, and 3) use(……)