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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

Psychosocial interventions for psychostimulant misuse

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, September 2016
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  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (95th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (86th percentile)

Mentioned by

5 news outlets
10 tweeters
2 Facebook pages
1 Wikipedia page

Readers on

217 Mendeley
Psychosocial interventions for psychostimulant misuse
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, September 2016
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd011866.pub2
Pubmed ID

Silvia Minozzi, Rosella Saulle, Franco De Crescenzo, Laura Amato


Psychostimulant misuse is a continuously growing medical and social burden. There is no evidence proving the efficacy of pharmacotherapy. Psychosocial interventions could be a valid approach to help patients in reducing or ceasing drug consumption. To assess the effects of psychosocial interventions for psychostimulant misuse in adults. We searched the Cochrane Drugs and Alcohol Group Specialised Register (via CRSLive); Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL); MEDLINE; EMBASE; CINAHL; Web of Science and PsycINFO, from inception to November 2015. We also searched for ongoing and unpublished studies via ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov) and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (apps.who.int/trialsearch/).All searches included non-English language literature. We handsearched references of topic-related systematic reviews and the included studies. We included randomised controlled trials comparing any psychosocial intervention with no intervention, treatment as usual (TAU) or a different intervention in adults with psychostimulant misuse or dependence. We used the standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane. We included a total of 52 trials (6923 participants).The psychosocial interventions considered in the studies were: cognitive behavioural therapy (19 studies), contingency management (25 studies), motivational interviewing (5 studies), interpersonal therapy (3 studies), psychodynamic therapy (1 study), 12-step facilitation (4 studies).We judged most of the studies to be at unclear risk of selection bias; blinding of personnel and participants was not possible for the type of intervention, so all the studies were at high risk of performance bias with regard to subjective outcomes; the majority of studies did not specify whether the outcome assessors were blind. We did not consider it likely that the objective outcomes were influenced by lack of blinding.The comparisons made were: any psychosocial intervention versus no intervention (32 studies), any psychosocial intervention versus TAU (6 studies), and one psychosocial intervention versus an alternative psychosocial intervention (13 studies). Five of included studies did not provide any useful data for inclusion in statistical synthesis.We found that, when compared to no intervention, any psychosocial treatment: reduced the dropout rate (risk ratio (RR): 0.83, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.76 to -0.91, 24 studies, 3393 participants, moderate quality evidence); increased continuous abstinence at the end of treatment (RR: 2.14, 95% CI 1.27 to -3.59, 8 studies, 1241 participants, low quality evidence); did not significantly increase continuous abstinence at the longest follow-up (RR: 2.12, 95% CI 0.77 to -5.86, 4 studies, 324 participants, low quality evidence); significantly increased the longest period of abstinence: (standardised mean difference (SMD): 0.48, 95% CI 0.34 to 0.63, 10 studies, 1354 participants, high quality evidence). However, it should be noted that the in the vast majority of the studies in this comparison the specific psychosocial treatment assessed in the experimental arm was given in add on to treatment as usual or to another specific psychosocial or pharmacological treatment which was received by both groups. So, many of the control groups in this comparison were not really untreated. Receiving some amount of treatment is not the same as not receiving any intervention, so we could argue that the overall effect of the experimental psychosocial treatment could be smaller if given in add on to TAU or to another intervention than if given to participants not receiving any intervention; this could translate to a smaller magnitude of the effect of the psychosocial intervention when it is given in add on.When compared to TAU, any psychosocial treatment reduced dropout rate (RR: 0.72, 95% CI 0.59 to 0.89, 6 studies, 516 participants, moderate quality evidence), did not increase continuous abstinence at the end of treatment (RR: 1.27, 95% CI 0.94 to 1.72, 2 studies, 224 participants, low quality evidence), did not increase longest period of abstinence (MD -3.15 days, 95% CI -10.35 to 4.05, 1 study, 110 participants, low quality evidence). No studies in this comparison assessed the outcome of continuous abstinence at longest follow-up.There were few studies comparing two or more psychosocial interventions, with small sample sizes and considerable heterogeneity in terms of the types of interventions assessed. None reported significant results.None of the studies reported harms related to psychosocial interventions. The addition of any psychosocial treatment to treatment as usual (usually characterised by group counselling or case management) probably reduces the dropout rate and increases the longest period of abstinence. It may increase the number of people achieving continuous abstinence at the end of treatment, although this might not be maintained at longest follow-up. The most studied and the most promising psychosocial approach to be added to treatment as usual is probably contingency management. However, the other approaches were only analysed in a few small studies, so we cannot rule out the possibility that the results were not significant because of imprecision. When compared to TAU, any psychosocial treatment may improve adherence, but it may not improve abstinence at the end of treatment or the longest period of abstinence.The majority of the studies took place in the United States, and this could limit the generalisability of the findings, because the effects of psychosocial treatments could be strongly influenced by the social context and ethnicity. The results of our review do not answer the most relevant clinical question, demonstrating which is the most effective type of psychosocial approach.Further studies should directly compare contingency management with the other psychosocial approaches.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 10 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 217 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Portugal 1 <1%
Unknown 216 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 42 19%
Student > Ph. D. Student 25 12%
Student > Bachelor 23 11%
Researcher 20 9%
Student > Postgraduate 12 6%
Other 30 14%
Unknown 65 30%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 53 24%
Psychology 33 15%
Nursing and Health Professions 22 10%
Social Sciences 15 7%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 4 2%
Other 22 10%
Unknown 68 31%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 55. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 30 June 2020.
All research outputs
of 22,890,496 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
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Outputs of similar age
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Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 276 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 22,890,496 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 97th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 12,333 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 30.5. This one has done well, scoring higher than 89% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 322,600 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 95% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 276 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done well, scoring higher than 86% of its contemporaries.