In 2012, Baclofen was approved for use in the treatment of alcoholism on a case-by-case basis by the AFSSAPS (France’s version of the FDA). Historically, the drug was designed to treat epilepsy, and later certain forms of spasticity.
But thanks to the cuttinge-edge research of one doctor, Olivier Ameisen (June 25, 1953 – July 18, 2013), a French-American cardiologist, we now know that Baclofen is highly effective at suppressing the symptoms of addiction. After hearing anecdotal reports that the muscle relaxant Baclofen was, like Naltrexone, modestly effective at reducing the cravings of addictions, Dr. Ameisen experimented on himself and proposed a new treatment model for addiction that is evidence-based. He first postulated that unlike other diseases in which suppression of symptoms is not associated with improvement of prognosis (such as bacterial pneumonia, relief of unstable angina with medical means without surgery, etc…), in addition, suppression of symptoms (craving, preoccupation, thoughts, etc…) should suppress the disease altogether since addiction is, as he observed, a “symptom-driven disease”.
Of all “anti-craving medications used in animals, only one – Baclofen – has the unique property of suppressing the motivation to consume cocaine, heroin, alcohol, nicotine, and d-amphetamine. The effect is dose-dependent.
Since complete suppression of dependence using medication had never been described in the medical literature, Ameisen wrote up his own case report and the peer-reviewed journal Alcohol and Alcoholism published it on December 13, 2004, after praising the paper. In his paper, like in those that followed in JAMA, Lancet, CNS Drugs, etc., Ameisen urged for randomized trials to test suppression of alcohol dependence using high-dose Baclofen.
In 2008 Ameisen wrote a best-selling book, The End Of My Addiction, published in France as Le Dernier Verre (The Last Glass), describing his experience. In 2007 an Italian team also showed the effectiveness and the safety of Baclofen as a treatment for alcohol addiction
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