A team of researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital Recovery Research Institute in Boston has found that more than one-third of people recovering from addiction continue to experience chronic physical disease.
Previous research has examined the psychological, social, and interpersonal effect of addiction, however the aftermath of these excessive habits remains unexplored. Lead author, David Eddie, Ph.D., and a research scientist says, "Less well-appreciated is the physical disease burden, especially among those who have successfully resolved a significant substance use problem." The researchers analyzed data from the 2017 National Recovery Survey and created a sample of 2,000 American adults who were in the process of recovering from severe substance use. Out of these, 37% had been diagnosed with one or more of the following health problems: liver disease, tuberculosis, HIV or other sexually transmitted infections, cancer, hepatitis C, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), heart disease, and diabetes.
According to the findings, hepatitis C, COPD, heart disease, and diabetes were more frequent among people in recovery, in comparison with the general population. According to Dr. Eddie, "The extent to which these diseases and health conditions continue to persist for the millions of Americans who achieve recovery remains to be clarified, but this study highlights the fact that these negative impacts may continue to affect quality of life, even when people achieve addiction recovery." He concluded that more research is required in order to explore the complex association between addiction and physical disease. He also mentioned that better methods need to be adopted by the healthcare industry to assist those suffering from substance abuse disorders and reduce the risk of disease.
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