The Relationship between Dissociative Experiences and the Success of Treatment through Abstinence from Opioid-Use Disorders


avatar Mohsen Kianpoor 1 , * , avatar Ahmad Ghanizadeh 2 , avatar Hedieh Badiei 3

Department of Psychiatry, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran
Department of Psychiatry, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
Psychiatrist, Shiraz, Iran

how to cite: Kianpoor M, Ghanizadeh A, Badiei H. The Relationship between Dissociative Experiences and the Success of Treatment through Abstinence from Opioid-Use Disorders. Zahedan J Res Med Sci. 2012;14(10):e93194.


Background : Dissociation is a defense mechanism by which people under stress detach their thoughts, emotions and behaviors from the normal stream of consciousness in order to protect themselves against the threats imposed on their ego. The phenomenon of dissociation is associated with a group of psychiatric disorders, including substance use disorders (SUDs), and leads individuals to incline towards drugs. This study examines the relationship between the dissociation symptoms prior to abstinence treatment and the abstinence success.
Materials and Methods : 128 opioid dependent males were selected randomly and examined using Dissociative Experience Scale (DES) questionnaire and a self-administered questionnaire. After two months, the subjects were divided, in terms of abstinence success, into three groups of rehabilitated (successfully-rehabilitated), recurrence, and non-referral groups. The three groups were compared to each other with regard to the DES mean score, demographic characteristics, drug use history, self-destruction, and self-mutilation history, using statistical methods of χ2, t-test, and one-way ANOVA.
Results : The results showed that 39% of the subjects obtained a dissociation score of 15 and above in DES scale. There was a significant negative correlation between the dissociation score and abstinence success (p=0.001). There was no significant relationship between the DES score and demographic factors such as education level, residential location, and marital status. Moreover, the treatment follow-up of individuals showed that there was no significant relationship among the three groups in terms of age and education level.
Conclusion : The extent of dissociative phenomena in drug dependent individuals who decide to discontinue drug abuse is effective in the sense of treatment outcome. Hence, the individuals are recommended to be examined for dissociative symptoms prior to drug treatment, and receive the proper treatment.


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