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Disulfiram Treatment of Alcoholism

Colin Brewer, MB
JAMA. 1987;257(7):926. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03390070046010.
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To the Editor.—  It is good to have further confirmation that disulfiram reduces drinking in alcoholic men, but it is a pity, to put it mildly, that Dr Fuller and his coauthors1 put so much effort into a clinical trial seemingly designed to minimize its therapeutic potential. The reason for their failure to demonstrate the impressive and specific treatment effects shown by other investigators cited in their article is their apparent belief that simply giving patients a bottle of disulfiram and hoping they will take it regularly represents sound, conventional practice. This is certainly not the case in Denmark or in Britain, where "it is becoming more frequent for the doctor to suggest that a third person supervise the Antabuse... a relative or someone at work,"2 and promotional literature has recommended supervised administration for several years.Conventional double-blind trials are not the only objective method of comparing treatments


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