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Real Time Assessment of Drug Craving, Use, and Abstinence During Outpatient: A Development and Feasibility Study

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC) Identifier:
First received: February 14, 2006
Last updated: June 30, 2017
Last verified: June 11, 2013


  • The treatment of addiction often hinges on preventing relapse into drug-using behaviors, which occurs at high rates even after prolonged abstinence. Research has shown that constant reporting through personal data-collection devices, such as electronic diaries, can help prevent relapse and reinforce abstinence. This constant reporting is known as Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA).
  • The researchers here at NIDA have already completed two major arms of the study, focusing on patterns of craving and drug use during methadone maintenance, and on whether electronic diaries could help remind outpatients to complete treatment tasks. An ongoing arm of the study is examining connections among drug craving/use, stress, and geographical location.


- To investigate the role of stress associated with geographical location in drug craving and use.


- Individuals between 18 and 65 years of age or older who are dependent on opioids (cocaine and/or heroin).


  • The study will last 28 weeks. After the initial screening, participants will receive daily methadone and weekly drug counseling sessions that will continue throughout the study.
  • After 3 weeks of methadone treatment, participants will have 15 weeks of EMA in which they will record both event-triggered cravings and daily responses (3 per day). EMA will consist of event-triggered recordings (initiated by participants whenever they use heroin or cocaine, or whenever they feel an urge to do so) and random-signal-triggered recordings (3 per day). During EMA, participants will begin a voucher-based program to encourage abstinence from heroin and cocaine.
  • Participants will also carry global positioning system (GPS) units to record their locations during these 15 weeks, and will complete questionnaires about stress levels at specific intervals during the study.
  • At the end of the study, participants will have the choice of transferring to a community clinic or undergoing an 8-week taper from methadone.

Cocaine Addiction Opiate Addiction

Study Type: Observational
Study Design: Time Perspective: Prospective
Official Title: Real Time Assessment of Drug Craving, Use, and Abstinence During Outpatient: A Development and Feasibility Study

Further study details as provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):

Estimated Enrollment: 250
Study Start Date: August 15, 2003
Estimated Study Completion Date: June 11, 2013
  Show Detailed Description


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 65 Years   (Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

    1. Age between 18 and 65;
    2. Evidence of physical dependence on opioids (self-report and physical exam);
    3. Evidence of cocaine and opiate use (self-report and urine screen).



  1. Schizophrenia or any other DSM-IV psychotic disorder; history of bipolar disorder; current Major Depressive Disorder;
  2. Current dependence on alcohol or sedative-hypnotic, e.g. benzodiazepine (by DSM-IV criteria);
  3. Cognitive impairment severe enough to preclude informed consent or valid self-report;
  4. Medical illness that in the view of the investigators would compromise participation in research;
  5. Urologic conditions that would inhibit urine collection;
  6. In arm 2 only: current or recent maintenance on a methadone dose substantially higher than the arm 2 ceiling dose of 100 mg/day; the MRP will evaluate this case by case.
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00292136

United States, Maryland
National Institute on Drug Abuse
Baltimore, Maryland, United States, 21224
Sponsors and Collaborators
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Principal Investigator: Kenzie Preston, Ph.D. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
  More Information Identifier: NCT00292136     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 999903385
Study First Received: February 14, 2006
Last Updated: June 30, 2017

Keywords provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):
Cocaine Dependence
Drug Relapse
Polydrug Abuse

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Behavior, Addictive
Cocaine-Related Disorders
Opioid-Related Disorders
Compulsive Behavior
Impulsive Behavior
Substance-Related Disorders
Chemically-Induced Disorders
Mental Disorders processed this record on August 18, 2017