Twelve Step Based Self-help Groups for Substance Related Disorders (TSF_Norway)

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
Sorlandet Hospital HF Identifier:
First received: June 27, 2008
Last updated: April 15, 2014
Last verified: April 2014

The Twelve Step groups are the most available and widespread self-help groups for patients with alcohol or drug related disorders. In a public health perspective, self-help groups (SHGs) may be considered as a supplement to professional treatment and provide aftercare soon as professional treatment has ended.

There is a need to investigate if U.S. findings and procedures concerning referrals from the health services to Twelve Step Groups (TSGs) can be replicated and accommodated to a cultural setting which is unfamiliar with these groups. There is also a particular need in the Norwegian treatment system to develop alternative treatment strategies for patients undergoing detoxification to improve their chances of long-term recovery, due to deficient formal follow-up alternatives.

We plan to carry out a RCT-study. One hundred and sixty patients entering a detoxification treatment center (Addiction Unit, Sørlandet Hospital, Kristiansand, Norway) will be assigned to two different groups: One given standard information about TSGs (brief advice) and one given intensive referral (motivational sessions and contact with TSG volunteers). A follow up assessment is planned at 6 months to determine whether intensive referral results in more TSG attendance, and if this mediates less substance use and better functioning outcomes.

This study introduces a new concept in the Norwegian health care system and relies on a systematic cooperation with user organizations (SHGs) and user volunteers. Thus the study focuses strongly on user resources.

Condition Intervention
Substance Use Disorders
Behavioral: Brief motivation to participate in TSG

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Twelve Step Based Self-help Groups for Substance Related Disorders - A Randomized Controlled Trial on a Detoxification Center

Further study details as provided by Sorlandet Hospital HF:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Self-help groups attendance and involvement during 6 months observation period. [ Time Frame: Six months after detox treatment ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • 1)Substance use outcomes measured by Europ-ASI 2) Quality of Life [ Time Frame: 6 months after detox treatment ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Enrollment: 140
Study Start Date: September 2008
Study Completion Date: February 2011
Primary Completion Date: February 2011 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Intervention group Behavioral: Brief motivation to participate in TSG
The intensive intervention will consist of a boost motivational session on follow-up alternatives and particularly on attending TSGs. Efforts will be made to connect the patients with TSG volunteers via the AA/NA contact telephone. The patients are encouraged to invite AA/NA contact persons to visit them on the ward. The patient will then have the possibility to be followed to a meeting after treatment. The patients in the intensive referral group will get a phone call four weeks after discharge. The focus of this call will be on continued motivation to attend TSGs.
No Intervention: Control group
Will only get a standard information about TSG group (information about meeting etc.)


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 70 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Patients with alcohol and substance use disorders treated on a detox ward

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Severe psychiatric comorbidity
  • Patients on opioid replacement therapy
  • Those who have appointment with other inpatient treatment at intake (and will be transferred to such treatment)
  Contacts and Locations
Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00708890

Sørlandet Sykehus
Kristiansand, VA, Norway, 4604
Sponsors and Collaborators
Sorlandet Hospital HF
  More Information

Additional Information:
Responsible Party: Svein Gunnar Gundersen, Sørlandet Hospital HF Identifier: NCT00708890     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: SSHF_815357
Study First Received: June 27, 2008
Last Updated: April 15, 2014
Health Authority: Norway:National Committee for Medical and Health Research Ethics

Keywords provided by Sorlandet Hospital HF:
Substance use disorders
Self-help groups
Twelve Step groups

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Substance-Related Disorders
Mental Disorders processed this record on April 22, 2014