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Author: Gerhard A Wiesbeck (59)


Dec
1969

Substance use treatment is often performed inside locked wards. We investigate the effects of adopting a policy of open-door treatment for a substance use treatment and dual diagnosis ward.
This is a prospective open-label study investigating 3-month study periods before opening (P1), immediately after (P2), and 1 year after the first period (P3).

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Apr
2017

Exposure to traumatic events is common among patients with substance use disorders (SUD). In patients with non-substance-related disorders, especially with gambling disorders (GD) and internet addiction (IA), traumatic childhood experiences have not been investigated extensively. The objective of this study was to compare trauma histories in patients with GD and IA to patients with heroin dependence.

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Dec
2015

Heroin addiction is a severe relapsing brain disorder associated with impaired cognitive control, including deficits in attention allocation. The thalamus has a high density of opiate receptors and is critically involved in orchestrating cortical activity during cognitive control. However, there have been no studies on how acute heroin treatment modulates thalamic activity.

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Dec
2014

Concomitant cocaine use is a major problem in clinical practice in methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) and may interfere with successful treatment. Data from European methadone populations is sparse. This register-based study sought to explore the association between prescribed methadone dose and concomitant cocaine and heroin use in the methadone population of Basel City.

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Dec
2014

Cocaine has become one of the drugs of most concern in Switzerland, being associated with a wide range of medical, psychiatric and social problems. Available treatment options for cocaine dependence are rare. The study sought to compare combined prize-based contingency management (prizeCM) plus cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) to CBT alone in cocaine-dependent patients.

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Jan
2015

Recent evidence has shown that a single maintenance dose of heroin attenuates psychophysiological stress responses in heroin-dependent patients, probably reflecting the effectiveness of heroin-assisted therapies for the treatment of severe heroin addiction. However, the underlying neural circuitry of these effects has not yet been investigated. Using a cross-over, double-blind, vehicle-controlled design, 22 heroin-dependent and heroin-maintained outpatients from the Centre of Substance Use Disorders at the University Hospital of Psychiatry in Basel were studied after heroin and placebo administration, while 17 healthy controls from the general population were included for placebo administration only.

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May
2015

The compulsion to seek and use heroin is frequently driven by stress and craving during drug-cue exposure. Although previous neuroimaging studies have indicated that craving is mediated by increased prefrontal cortex activity, it remains unknown how heroin administration modulates the prefrontal cortex response. This study examines the acute effects of heroin on brain function in heroin-maintained patients.

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Sep
2014

Neuroimaging studies have reported reduced activity in a broad network of brain regions during response inhibition in heroin-dependent patients. However, how heroin in an acute dose modulates the neural correlates of response inhibition and the underlying brain connectivity has not yet been investigated. In this double-blind placebo-controlled study, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine whether acute heroin administration changed whole brain activity during response inhibition in 26 heroin-dependent patients.

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Mar
2014

The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of cannabis use among Swiss students and to assess their attitudes regarding health and safety issues associated with drug use.
After a workshop, 173 students (23.1% male, 75.

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Mar
2015

Pathological gambling is defined as inappropriate, persistent, and maladaptive gambling behaviour. It is a non-pharmacological addiction classified as an impulse control disorder. However, pathological gambling has been associated with dopamine agonist use.

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Aug
2014

Negative emotional states and abnormal stress reactivity are central components in drug addiction. The brain stress system in the amygdala is thought to play a key role in the maintenance of drug dependence through negative reinforcement. Although acute heroin administration was found to reduce anxiety, craving, and stress hormone release, whether these effects are reflected in amygdala activity has not yet been investigated.

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Dec
1969

Structure and function are closely related in the healthy human brain. In patients with chronic heroin exposure, brain imaging studies have identified long-lasting changes in gray matter (GM) volume. More recently, we showed that acute application of heroin in dependent patients results in hypoperfusion of fronto-temporal areas compared with the placebo condition.

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Dec
1969

Euphoria has been described in heroin-dependent individuals after heroin administration. However, affective disturbances and disorders are common in heroin dependence. The present study examined the acute effects of heroin on emotions in heroin-dependent patients.

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Dec
1969

The main objective of this review was to compare the effectiveness of cognitive-behavioral therapy and contingency management for cocaine dependence. Contingency management alone reliably reduced cocaine use during active treatment in all cited trials, whereas the positive effect of cognitive-behavioral therapy emerged after treatment in 3 of 5 trials. Synergistic effects of the combination of contingency management plus cognitive-behavioral therapy are shown in 2 trials, but another 3 trials found no additive effects.

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Dec
1969

Heroin dependence is a chronic relapsing brain disorder, characterized by the compulsion to seek and use heroin. Heroin itself has a strong potential to produce subjective experiences characterized by intense euphoria, relaxation and release from craving. The neurofunctional foundations of these perceived effects are not well known.

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Oct
2013

Benzodiazepine (BZD) use is widespread among opioid-maintained patients worldwide. We conducted a cross-sectional survey to investigate motives and patterns of BZD use and psychiatric comorbidity in a convenience sample of patients (n=193) maintained on oral opioid agonists or diacetylmorphine (DAM). Prolonged BZD use and high-risk behaviors like parenteral use were common.

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Oct
2013

Impairments in inhibitory control and in stimulus-driven attention are hallmarks of drug addiction and are associated with decreased activation in the right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Although previous studies indicate that the response inhibition function is impaired in abstinent heroin dependents, and that this is mediated by reduced IFG activity, it remains completely unknown whether and how an acute dose of heroin modulates IFG activity during cognitive control in heroin-dependent patients. This study investigates the acute effects of heroin administration on IFG activity during response inhibition and stimulus-driven attention in heroin-dependent patients.

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Apr
2013

Heroin dependence is associated with a stressful environment and with dysfunction of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. The present study examined the acute effects of intravenous heroin versus placebo on the HPA axis response in heroin-dependent patients. Twenty-eight heroin-dependent patients in heroin-assisted treatment and 20 age- and sex-matched healthy participants were included in a controlled trial in which patients were twice administered heroin or saline in a crossover design, and healthy controls were only administered saline.

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Dec
1969

Preclinical studies suggest that chronic drug abuse profoundly alters stress-responsive systems. The best studied of the stress-responsive systems in humans is the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Apart from cortisol, arginine vasopressin peptide (AVP), and atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) are known to directly impact upon the HPA axis in addictive behavior.

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Feb
2013

Cocaine dependence has proved difficult to treat, whether it occurs alone or in combination with opiate dependence. No intervention has been demonstrated to be uniquely effective. Patients might benefit most from combined pharmacotherapeutic and psychotherapeutic interventions.

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Dec
1969

Preclinical study results suggest that neurotrophic peptides like nerve growth factor (NGF) and vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A) may be associated with symptoms of addictive behavior like withdrawal symptoms and rewarding effects. We investigated alterations in NGF and VEGF-A serum levels in opiate-dependent patients (25 male patients), who received diamorphine (DAM, heroin) treatment within a structured opiate maintenance program, and compared the results with the NGF and VEGF-A serum levels of healthy controls (23 male controls). NGF and VEGF-A serum levels were assessed before and after DAM administration twice a day (in the morning (16 h after last application--t1) and in the afternoon (7 h after last application--t3)) in order to detect a possible immediate or summative (in the afternoon) heroin effect on these two neuropeptides.

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Dec
1969

Heroin dependence is a chronic relapsing disorder characterized by the compulsion to seek and use heroin. Stress and craving are seen as key factors for heroin use. Moreover, altered hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis function has been frequently reported.

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Nov
2011

Preclinical study results suggest that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) are involved in the modulation of addictive behaviour. We investigated alterations in serum levels of BDNF and GDNF in opiate-dependent patients (28 males) who received diacetylmorphine treatment within a structured opiate maintenance programme. BDNF (T = 2.

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Aug
2011

Patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) suffer from affective instability, impulsivity, and identity disturbance which particularly manifest in an unstable or insecure self-image. One main problem for studies of core psychopathology in BPD is the complex subject of identity disturbance and self-image. The purpose of this study was to investigate the self-image of BPD patients with a qualitative research approach.

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Dec
2011

Benzodiazepine (BZD) misuse in opioid-maintained patients is widespread and has been related to poorer treatment success. Associated factors, in particular, traumatic childhood experiences, have not been investigated extensively.
Cross-sectional survey including the childhood trauma questionnaire (CTQ) and clinical data among 193 patients prescribed oral opioids or injectable diacetylmorphine for opioid dependence.

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May
2011

Data from the US indicates that methadone-maintained populations are aging, with an increase of patients aged 50 or older. Data from European methadone populations is sparse. This retrospective cohort study sought to evaluate the age trends and related developments in the methadone population of Basel-City, Switzerland.

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Nov
2011

Risk factors for osteoporosis are prevalent in chronic heroin users who often start using opiates in their late teens. This study was the first to evaluate bone mineral density (BMD) in relatively young heroin-dependent patients on injectable heroin maintenance.
Using cross-sectional design, BMD was assessed in a convenience sample of 19 patients (mean age ± SD = 33.

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Sep
2012

Research suggests that alpha-synuclein (SNCA) and NACP-Rep1, a polymorphic complex microsatellite repeat ~10 kb upstream of the SNCA gene translational start, may be involved in substance-use behaviors and craving. This study was the first to examine the effects of diacetylmorphine (DAM) on peripheral SNCA protein expression along with craving in opiate-dependent patients and to compare their NACP-Rep1 allele lengths with those of healthy controls. Using an experimental design, opiate-dependent patients on injectable heroin maintenance were investigated at four time points, twice pre- and post-injection of DAM.

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May
2011

Heavy alcohol consumption may accelerate the progression of hepatitis C-related liver disease and/or limit efforts at antiviral treatment in opioid-dependent patients receiving heroin-assisted treatment (HAT). Our study aims to assess alcohol intake among HAT patients by self-reports compared to direct ethanol metabolites.
Fifty-four patients in HAT were recruited from the centre for HAT at the University of Basel, Switzerland.

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May
2011

The Antisocial personality disorder (ASPD), one of the most common co-morbid psychiatric disorders in heroin-dependent patients, is associated with a lack of affective modulation. The present study aimed to compare the affect-modulated startle responses of opioid-maintained heroin-dependent patients with and without ASPD relative to those of healthy controls. Sixty participants (20 heroin-dependent patients with ASPD, 20 heroin-dependent patients without ASPD, 20 healthy controls) were investigated in an affect-modulated startle experiment.

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Apr
2011

Personality disorders (PD) and substance use disorders (SUD) lead to high violent criminality. The influence of co-morbidity on recidivism remains unclear. Recidivism of 379 offenders was assessed at 8 years of follow-up.

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Aug
2010

Some patients on steady-state methadone occasionally crave for extra opioids for different reasons (eg, cue-elicited craving, stress). This study examined the acute-on-chronic effects on heroin craving, mood, and opioid-like symptoms of a single, extra half-dose on top of the patient's prescribed daily methadone dosage. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, counterbalanced crossover design was used to test the safety of this practice and the hypotheses that extra methadone would reduce heroin craving and improve mood, with greater responses in lower-dose (20-60 mg/d) as compared with higher-dose patients (80-120 mg/d).

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Jan
2011

Heroin dependence (HD) is a chronic relapsing brain disorder characterized by a compulsion to seek and use heroin. Stress is seen as a key factor for heroin use. Methadone maintenance and the prescription of pharmaceutical heroin [diacetylmorphine (DAM)] are established treatments for HD in several countries.

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Jun
2010

Many methadone patients and untreated heroin users have an ambivalent attitude toward methadone maintenance. This may be a result of the widespread belief that methadone produces various side effects not found with heroin. This study compared the symptom complaints of patients on oral methadone maintenance (MMT) with those of patients prescribed injectable heroin (IHT).

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Jun
2010

Neural effects of heroin--relation to anxiety stress.

Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry 2010 Jun 28;34(5):816-7. Epub 2010 Jan 28.
Marc Walter, Gerhard A Wiesbeck, Anita Riecher-Rössler, Stefan J Borgwardt

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Dec
1969

Alcohol dependence is a heavy burden on patients, their families, and society. Epidemiological studies indicate that alcohol dependence will affect many individuals at some time in their lives, with men affected more frequently than women. Since alcohol-dependent patients often exhibit a lack of social skills and suffer from interpersonal problems, the aim of this study is to elucidate whether men and women experience the same interpersonal problems.

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Jun
2009

Substance use disorders (SUD) include substance abuse and dependence as well as acute intoxication, withdrawal, and various psychiatric disorders. In the course of the SUD, severe comorbid disorders and somatic consequences can occur. The treatment of withdrawal symptoms focuses on the relief of immediate symptoms and the prevention of complications.

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Dec
1969

Personality traits are important individual characteristics modifying responses to therapy in various diseases. The aim of this study was to identify personality traits that may predict treatment outcome in alcohol-dependent patients. The present analysis was based on a total of 146 alcohol-dependent patients (109 male, 37 female) after detoxification.

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Sep
2008

Heavy alcohol consumption may accelerate the progression of hepatitis C (HCV)-related liver disease and/or limit efforts at antiviral treatment. As most of the patients in methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) suffer from hepatitis C infection, this study was conducted to identify the alcohol intake among these patients at a Swiss Psychiatric University Clinic by self-reports and direct ethanol metabolites as biomarkers of ethanol consumption.
A convenience sample of 40 MMT patients (15 women, 25 men; median age 39 years) of the total 124 patients was asked and consented to participate in this study.

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Jul
2008

Non-traumatic spontaneous idiopathic spinal subarachnoid haemorrhage (SSH) is extremely rare. So far, only 12 cases have been described in the literature and there are no data regarding the association between alcohol dependence and SSH.
We report the first case of an alcohol-dependent patient with an idiopathic non-traumatic cervical subarachnoid haemorrhage after alcohol withdrawal therapy.

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May
2008

Craving and stress frequently drive compulsive heroin use. Although methadone attenuates craving, drug-conditioned stimuli can trigger craving and possibly stress arousal in heroin-dependent patients receiving methadone maintenance. This study investigated drug cue-related craving, affectivity, and cortisol reactivity in 16 methadone-maintained patients before and after daily methadone.

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May
2008

A 37-year-old female subject had been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol, and 19 months later, claimed abstinence after supervised disulfiram treatment. Our aim was to elucidate the value of direct ethanol metabolites as measures of abstinence. Ethyl glucuronide (EtG) and fatty acid ethyl esters (FAEE) in hair, phosphatidylethanol in whole blood and EtG and ethyl sulphate in urine were measured.

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Dec
2007

Ghrelin is a 28-amino acid gut-brain peptide, mainly secreted by the gastric mucosa. Its effects are linked to energy homeostasis and particularly seem to increase hunger and food intake. In recent years, studies suggested that appetite-regulating peptides, such as ghrelin play a relevant role in alcoholism.

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Dec
2007

To highlight the need to consider other medical conditions when the presentation initially appears to be alcohol-related.
We report the case of a 34-year-old male alcoholic, who presented with clinical depression and later a delirious state, and was subsequently diagnosed to have a right frontal glioblastoma multiforme.
Psychiatric patients, especially alcoholics, may present with physical and neurological symptoms in the emergency department, which are linked by the examiner to the toxic effects of alcohol.

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Sep
2007

The purpose of the study was to assess prevalence of benzodiazepine use in the Swiss adult population and to assess on benzodiazepine prescription patterns of physicians in domiciliary practice.
A retrospective, population-based cross-sectional study with 520 000 patients covering a 6-month period.
We estimated the prevalence, amount and duration of benzodiazepine use using a pharmacy dispensing database.

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Jan
2007

Chronic alcohol abuse results in morphological, metabolic, and functional brain damage which may, to some extent, be reversible with early effects upon abstinence. Although morphometric, spectroscopic, and neuropsychological indicators of cerebral regeneration have been described previously, the overall amount and spatial preference of early brain recovery attained by abstinence and its associations with other indicators of regeneration are not well established. We investigated global and local brain volume changes in a longitudinal two-timepoint study with T1-weighted MRI at admission and after short-term (6-7 weeks) sobriety follow-up in 15 uncomplicated, recently detoxified alcoholics.

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Dec
1969

Alcohol-dependent patients face a substantial risk of relapse after detoxification. Though psychosocial stress and coping strategies are regarded as major contributing factors in returning to drinking, the direct effects of coping styles on relapse are not clear. In this treatment outcome study, a mixed gender sample of 130 detoxified and well-characterized alcohol-dependent patients (37 women) was followed up over a period of 12 months after 6 weeks of inpatient treatment.

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Dec
1969

The present study examined the association between pre-treatment drinking and smoking parameters and plasma testosterone levels before and after alcohol withdrawal.
A total of 51 alcohol-dependent men and 43 age-matched healthy men were investigated. In alcoholics, free testosterone in plasma was measured on the day of admission, after detoxification and after 6 weeks of sobriety.

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Jun
2006

Alcohol-dependent patients face a substantial risk of relapse after detoxification. A major risk factor for relapse is stress which is reflected biologically by various physiological changes that include an activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and release of glucocorticoids. The prospective study examined cortisol concentrations and stress-coping styles in relation to abstinence 1 year following discharge from treatment.

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