Systematic Review: Adding Psychosocial Support to Routine Counseling in Opioid Agonist Treatment Does Not Provide Additional Benefits
Opioid agonist treatment (OAT) in the form of methadone or buprenorphine has become a standard treatment for opioid dependence and has been shown to be effective. Evidence of the effectiveness of additional psychosocial interventions is less clear. This systematic review, which included 35 studies with 4319 participants, looked at 13 different psychosocial interventions combined with OAT. Most of the studies (24) looked at behavioral interventions; 7 assessed counseling interventions. When comparing the effectiveness of OAT plus psychosocial interventions with OAT alone:
- investigators found no significant difference in treatment retention (relative risk [RR), 1.02), opioid abstinence during treatment (RR, 1.19), or any of the following measures: compliance, psychiatric symptoms, depression, or abstinence at the end of treatment.