Fighting Fire With Fire

Does an unproven treatment that combats drug addiction with drugs promise more than it can deliver?

The last vacation he took before getting clean was a golf trip to Arizona. Unconcerned about drug-sniffing dogs or jail, he walked through airport security with a baggie of crystal meth tucked into his pocket.

Steve's recent family vacation was an experience he couldn't have imagined back then. As he and his wife got ready to leave the house in late July, she handed him a box. "Would you mind taking this test for me?" she said.

"Sure," he replied. Unlike two years ago, he doesn't resent her vigilance. Her random drug testing is just another safeguard against The Addict's clutches. There's nothing to hide, no drug escapes to plan, no shame.

Dr. Bryon Adinoff, distinguished professor of alcohol and drug abuse research at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, is doing experiments to identify the causes of relapse and pave the way for medical treatments that could prevent it.  He's concerned Prometa promises too much too soon.
Morrey Taylor
Dr. Bryon Adinoff, distinguished professor of alcohol and drug abuse research at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, is doing experiments to identify the causes of relapse and pave the way for medical treatments that could prevent it. He's concerned Prometa promises too much too soon.
Dr. Bryon Adinoff is concerned Prometa promises too much too soon.
Morrey Taylor
Dr. Bryon Adinoff is concerned Prometa promises too much too soon.

Lounging on the beach and gazing out at the Atlantic, he's able to focus on his wife and children without being consumed by something else.

"Before, I'd be in the room with my kids while they were coloring, but now I'm talking with them, praising what they're doing, participating with them," he says. The days of covert drug deals seem almost like a bad dream. "Looking back, it seems so stupid—it's so great not to have to worry about all that, to be able to just hang out with everybody."

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