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Issy-les-Moulineaux, France

Rolland B.,Societe Francaise dAlcoologie | Rolland B.,University of Lille Nord de France | Paille F.,Societe Francaise dAlcoologie | Paille F.,Nancy University Hospital Center | And 8 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Objective: To evaluate, among alcohol specialists belonging to the Société Française d'Alcoologie (SFA), i.e., the French Alcohol Society, the proportion of physicians who prescribed off-label baclofen for alcohol use disorders (AUDs). The secondary objective was to depict the features of individual prescribing and monitoring practices. Methods: On-line survey among 484 French alcohol specialists. Physicians were asked whether they prescribed baclofen for AUDs. If they did not, the reasons for this choice were investigated. If they did, the features of the physician's prescribing practice were explored, including the number of patients treated, the mean and maximum doses, the monitoring precautions and the pharmacovigilance reporting. Participants were also asked about their empirical findings on HDB's efficacy and safety. Results: In total, 302 physicians (response rate of 62.4%) participated in the survey. Data from 296 participants were analysed, representing 59.4% of all active prescribing physicians belonging to the SFA. HDB use was declared by 74.6% of participants (mean dose 109.5±43.6 mg/d; maximum dose 188±93.3 mg/d). However, 79.2% of prescribers had treated less than 30 patients, and 67.8% used HDB as a second-line medication. Although HDB was perceived as more efficacious than approved drugs by 54.3% of prescribers, it was also declared less safe by 62.8%. Nonetheless, 79.7% of prescribers had never filed any pharmacovigilance report. Non-prescribers (25.6%) were primarily deterred by the current lack of scientific data and official regulation. Conclusion: A majority of French alcohol specialists reported using HDB, although often on a limited number of their patients. HDB was considered efficacious but also potentially hazardous. Despite this, physicians reported minimal safety data to the health security system. While French health authorities are planning to draft a specific regulatory measure for framing off-label HDB prescribing practices, the sustained education of prescribers on spontaneous pharmacovigilance reporting should be enhanced. © 2014 Rolland et al.

Rolland B.,Societe Francaise dAlcoologie | Rolland B.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Paille F.,Societe Francaise dAlcoologie | Paille F.,Nancy University Hospital Center | And 12 more authors.
CNS Neuroscience and Therapeutics | Year: 2016

Background: The latest French good practice recommendations (GPRs) for the screening, prevention, and treatment of alcohol misuse were recently published in partnership with the European Federation of Addiction Societies (EUFAS). This article aims to synthesize the GPRs focused on the pharmacotherapy of alcohol dependence. Methods: A four-member European steering committee defined the questions that were addressed to an 18-member multiprofessional working group (WG). The WG developed the GPRs based on a systematic, hierarchical, and structured literature search and submitted the document to two review processes involving 37 French members from multiple disciplines and 5 non-French EUFAS members. The final GPRs were graded A, B, or C, or expert consensus (EC) using a reference recommendation grading system. Results: The treatment of alcohol dependence consists of either alcohol detoxification or abstinence maintenance programs or drinking reduction programs. The therapeutic objective is the result of a decision made jointly by the physician and the patient. For alcohol detoxification, benzodiazepines (BZDs) are recommended in first-line (grade A). BZD dosing should be guided by regular clinical monitoring (grade B). Residential detoxification is more appropriate for patients with a history of seizures, delirium tremens, unstable psychiatric comorbidity, or another associated substance use disorder (grade B). BZDs are only justified beyond a 1-week period in the case of persistent withdrawal symptoms, withdrawal events or associated BZD dependence (grade B). BZDs should not be continued for more than 4 weeks (grade C). The dosing and duration of thiamine (vitamin B1) during detoxification should be adapted to nutritional status (EC). For relapse prevention, acamprosate and naltrexone are recommended as first-line medications (grade A). Disulfiram can be proposed as second-line option in patients with sufficient information and supervision (EC). For reducing alcohol consumption, nalmefene is indicated in first line (grade A). The second-line prescription of baclofen, up to 300 mg/day, to prevent relapse or reduce drinking should be carried out according to the "temporary recommendation for use" measure issued by the French Health Agency (EC). During pregnancy, abstinence is recommended (EC). If alcohol detoxification is conducted during pregnancy, BZD use is recommended (grade B). No medication other than those for alcohol detoxification should be initiated in pregnant or breastfeeding women (EC). In a stabilized pregnant patient taking medication to support abstinence, the continuation of the drug should be considered on a case-by-case basis, weighing the benefit/risk ratio. Only disulfiram should be always stopped, given the unknown risks of the antabuse effect on the fetus (EC). First-line treatments to help maintain abstinence or reduce drinking are off-label for people under 18 years of age and should thus be considered on a case-by-case basis after the repeated failure of psychosocial measures alone (EC). Short half-life BZDs should be preferred for the detoxification of elderly patients (grade B). The initial doses of BZDs should be reduced by 30 to 50% in elderly patients (EC). In patients with chronic alcohol-related physical disorders, abstinence is recommended (EC). Any antidepressant or anxiolytic medication should be introduced after a psychiatric reassessment after 2-4 weeks of alcohol abstinence or low-risk use (grade B). A smoking cessation program should be offered to any smokers involved in an alcohol treatment program (grade B). © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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