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From conducting research while caring for patients to investigating how to minimize harm from chronic opioid use for pain management, BMC research is helping to shine light on how to care for patients with addiction.
Research in Addiction Medicine Scholars (RAMS)
The NIDA-funded Research in Addiction Medicine Scholars (RAMS) Program will develop skills in addiction medicine research among physicians from ABAM Foundation-accredited addiction medicine fellowship programs or addiction psychiatry fellowship programs across the United States. The RAMS Program will make important contributions to the development of the next generation of addiction physician researchers in order to provide better care for patients with and at risk for addictive diseases.
RESPECT Perinatal Substance Use Research Group
More than 120 babies are born at BMC each year to women with opioid use disorders. Researchers in the Departments of Pediatrics & Obstetrics and Gynecology are busy discovering new and better treatments for these vulnerable infants, many of whom are develop Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS). All babies born to with in-utero opioid exposure are monitored as inpatients for 5-7 days for symptoms of opioid withdrawal. The most recent available data suggest that twelve percent of all NAS babies in the state are cared for by BMC. The RESPECT Research Group is learning about the short-term medical and long-term developmental outcomes of treating these newborns with different pharmacologic regimens. The groundbreaking studies conducted by the RESPECT Research Group are resulting in many publications, leading the way to higher quality, more personalized care for babies exposed to opioids during pregnancy. Recent studies and publications have focused on the impact of genetic variants on NAS outcomes, the influence of clinical factors such as prematurity and breastfeeding on NAS outcomes, and the importance of non-pharmacologic care on NAS outcomes.
Targeting HIV-comorbidities with Pharmacotherapy to Reduce Alcohol and Tobacco Use in HIV-infected Russians
The St PETER HIV trial will to compare the effects of two nicotinic receptor partial agonists, varenicline and cytisine, on alcohol consumption, alcohol craving, smoking, inflammation, CHD risk and mortality risk.
There is evidence to suggest that many individuals suffering from opioid use disorders become addicted after having been legally prescribed opioids by a physician as a treatment for chronic pain. In all-too-many cases, prescription opioid use escalates to a heroin addiction, as heroin is cheaper and easier to access than prescription opioids. The purpose of TOPCARE (Transforming Opioid Prescribing in Primary Care) is to bring change in the way primary care services are delivered and decrease misuse of, and addiction to, prescription opioids.
With federal research funding, BMC physician researchers are examining the impact of opioid prescribing guidelines for chronic pain to determine whether adherence to these guidelines reduces opioid misuse. The TOPCARE program trains physicians to adhere to prescribing guidelines and then follows up with physicians implementing the guidelines to continue to improve prescribing of targeted drugs. TOPCARE is expected to improve patient care, prevent addiction, and reduce healthcare costs.