About the Author
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Linda Burlison is the author of the first book about medications for the treatment of alcoholism.
She wrote the book, ‘A Prescription for Alcoholics – Medications for Alcoholism,’ the first book ever published that takes a look at the many little-known FDA-approved medications that can help treat alcoholism.
It provides extensive, detailed information on drugs like acamprosate, baclofen, topiramate, naltrexone, nalmefene, gabapentin and several other medications which have been proven for many years, by the world’s leading addiction researchers, to help dependent drinkers regain control over their drinking, and their lives.
In the author’s words:
The World Health Organization has said that alcohol is the number one killer worldwide – ahead of AIDS. But it’s not the tragic epidemic of alcoholism that motivated me to write this book.
As with many people, I ignore most problems until they hit me in the face and become personal. I began researching medical options for a dear friend who was losing his battle with alcoholism.
At the time I began, there was no single resource which compiled all of the medications, and all of the extensive research supporting them, in one place. And now there is.
I haven’t invented any of these medications, or the research that backs them. I’ve simply compiled the information and everything I have learned, into one place for you. The book is extensively annotated, and every statement is backed up by solid, well-referenced research.
I’ve also tried to uncover why it is that most of us have never heard of these medications, from anyone, let alone a doctor.
But other than the overwhelming desire and motivation to make this information available to others, I’m not qualified to give you medical advice.
What I mean by this is, that I am not a doctor, who has bought into my community’s dogma;
I’m not a scientist who has sought research funding from a pharmaceutical company or committed my life to a particular research direction, or a pharma executive trying to pitch the next profitable drug;
I’m not an AA member committed to the AA way; I don’t make a living selling a counseling program, a herbal supplement or a meditative retreat. I’m not a part of the alcoholism research or medical or rehab community in any way.
I’m also not an alcoholic who needs to rely on the system for help or is afraid to ‘out’ myself at work or in my community.
I don’t have to be careful about who I offend for fear that I won’t be funded again, that an important organization will boycott my clinic; or the only friends I have in the world won’t call me again.
My lack of qualification and sponsorship means that in some ways I am the ideal person to write this book, because as a friend pointed out to me, sometimes it takes someone who is completely and utterly outside the system to hold up a mirror to it.
But as William Gibson once said, “I’m not trying to predict the future. I’m trying to let us see the present.”
But I’m way off on a tangent here.
Peter Ferentzy, author of Dealing with Addiction, wrote his book because of the circumstances around the death of a good friend. He wrote, “If I can turn her death, and that of many others, into a victory of some kind, then maybe it’ll all make sense. Or, maybe it’ll just seem a little less stupid.”
I’ve heard that quote over and over again in my mind. Half-way through writing the book, the person I had been researching for, someone who I had been desperately trying to help and who I really loved, died of alcoholism.
In nearly two decades of seeking treatment for alcohol addiction – nearly two decades where medications already existed to help treat alcoholism – never once had a doctor offered him medication for his disease. It was too late for him. We couldn’t get a doctor to support him in the way he needed support and medical treatment.
But it might not be too late for you.
I don’t want to dictate how anyone gets treatment. I just want people to know that these medications exist, and for them to be an option offered by the medical system to those who need them.
If you are an alcoholic, or know one, or simply fear that you are developing a dependence to alcohol, I’d be honored for you to take a read through ‘A Prescription for Alcoholics – Medication for Alcoholism.’
If you are skeptical about the existence of the medications I refer to, then download a free sample to begin with from Amazon, or look through a few quotes from experts that I begin the book with below. Full source references for these quotes and 400+ others are in the book’s bibliography.
Thank-you and best wishes.
A Prescription for Alcoholics – Medications for Alcoholism
“It is highly disturbing that this drug is not made available to the patients that need it.”
–Report in Pharmacology & Therapeutics, 2006
“There is an enormous gap between the number of alcohol use disorder patients [alcoholics] who would potentially benefit from medications and the number of patients who actually receive medications … a recent study … showed that nationally, only 3% of Veterans Health Administration patients with alcohol use disorder received treatment medications.”
–Report in American Journal of Psychiatry, 2014
“There is no other comparable example in medicine where you have evidence-based treatments that are not available.”
–Dr. Shelly Greenfield, MD, Chief Academic Officer, McLean Hospital; Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, 2012
“People with addictive disorders continue to be offered, with great certitude and frequently at great cost, ‘treatments’ that are unsubstantiated by data or already known to be without beneficial effects…Meanwhile, advances that may be modest but have solid scientific support are arrogantly rejected by treatment providers in ways that would cause an uproar in other areas of medicine.”
–Dr. Markus Heilig, M.D., Ph.D., Former Chief of the Laboratory of Clinical Studies, and a Clinical Director at the US Institute of Alcohol Abuse, 2015
“No experimental studies unequivocally demonstrated the effectiveness of AA or [12-step] approaches for reducing alcohol dependence… People considering attending AA or TSF [Twelve Step] programs should be made aware that there is a lack of experimental evidence on the effectiveness of such programs.”
–2006 Cochrane Review (Cochrane is one of the most credible and trusted scientific/medical review organizations in the world)
“I’m not trying to eliminate AA…I’m just saying it should be prescribed to that tiny group who can make use of it… It’s terribly harmful when you send 90 percent of the people for the wrong treatment advice.”
–Toronto Star article quoting Dr. Lance Dodes, Retired Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, 2014
“Medication-assisted treatment has shown much promise in reducing alcohol use and promoting abstinence in patients diagnosed with alcohol use disorder. Considerable research evidence and consensus among experts support the use of pharmacologic treatments…
A number of FDA-approved medications have been shown to be important elements of such treatment.
Although some patients do not benefit from medication-assisted treatment, most do. For each patient deemed an appropriate candidate for medication-assisted treatment, multiple pharmacologic agents offer a variety of options so that treatment can be tailored to each patient’s needs and circumstances.”
–Free Guide from the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, US Department of Health and Human Services, 2013
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