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Handbook of Office-Based Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Dependence
Reviewed by Thomas F. Newton, M.D.
Am J Psychiatry 2011;168:654-655. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.2011.11010070
View Author and Article Information
Houston, Tex.

Book review accepted for publication January 2011.

The author reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.

Accepted January , 2011.

Copyright © American Psychiatric Association

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The Handbook of Office-Based Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Dependence is intended to serve as a general resource for clinicians interested in using buprenorphine in the office-based treatment of opioid abuse. It is designed to mirror and expand upon the content of face-to-face buprenorphine training courses, with expanded coverage of counseling approaches and the treatment of adolescents. The editor refers to it as a manual, which it is, but at more than 300 pages, it is much more.

The handbook's 14 chapters cover a spectrum of topics related to the use of buprenorphine, including discussions of the history of opioid dependence in America, opioid pharmacology, clinical management of patients, medical management, psychiatric comorbidity, pain management, and logistical issues. It manages to be relatively comprehensive and yet remains usable.

Because this handbook is intended to mirror buprenorphine training courses, chapters end with "clinical pearls," which can be quite practical and useful. For example, Dr. McCance-Katz recommends the following: "Avoid the use of medications with abuse liability in opioid-addicted patients (e.g., quetiapine and benzodiazepines)" (p. 187). Good advice indeed.

Case discussions are integrated into the handbook throughout. These are brief and to the point, and overall they are thought-provoking and quite helpful.

This handbook is a welcome update to two older books, Buprenorphine Therapy of Opiate Addiction (2002) and Buprenorphine: Combating Drug Abuse with a Unique Opioid (1995). The former has a much more international scope and emphasis, and the latter is a little outdated. Handbook of Office-Based Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Dependence meets a clear need for an updated practical book aimed at helping practitioners "improve the lives" of their patients, as Frank Vocci puts it in the Foreword. It succeeds all around.

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