The persistence of post-detoxification problems in drug addiction is one of the disadvantages of the ultra-rapid opioid detoxification (UROD) method. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) has been introduced in experimental addiction treatment for some years. Results of pilot studies suggest that it might be a promising method for addiction treatment. This study explores the adjunctive application of tDCS during treating opiate addiction with the UROD approach.
This double-blind, sham-controlled clinical trial was carried out on patients with substance abuse admitted to the Bahman Clinic of Yazd City in Iran (from March to September 2014). Forty participants were randomly allocated to treatment and control groups. Two sessions of tDCS (real or sham) over dorsolateral prefrontal cortices (DLPFC) were applied, accompanied by UROD. Withdrawal symptoms and craving were assessed by the drug desire questionnaire and objective opiate withdrawal scale before UROD and for the 24-hour interval after.
Transcranial direct current stimulation optimized the opiate addiction treatment through craving and withdrawal syndrome alleviation.
The study results indicate that prefrontal tDCS may promote the efficacy of the UROD method in opioid addiction.
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