A new study by researchers at Yale School of Medicine tested a vaccine that may help addicts get rid of their habit – mainly cocaine.
Normally people receive vaccinations to prevent illnesses.
According to CNN, Dr. Thomas Kosten worked on the study at Yale before moving to Baylor College of Medicine in Texas. He said that this is the first time a cocaine vaccine has been tested in people. He added that the vaccine approach would be suitable for all kinds of addictive substances, except alcohol.
This vaccine may help addicts rehabilitate themselves. But will they want the treatment?
Kosten said it usually takes about two years for addicts to become drug-free, and that patients would have to be vaccinated every three months for that period to maintain antibody levels, according to CNN.
Surely, this option will be great for those who are dedicated to restoring their health.
But for many others, this will not be an alternative.
The time length for treatment is extremely long and seems discouraging.
With the exception of February, each month has at least 30 days and each vaccine is given three months apart.
That gives the patient 90 days to relapse.
The vaccine also affects an addict’s high. “Antibodies are very large proteins and when the cocaine attaches to those antibodies it can’t get into the brain or heart, so people don’t get high from it,” Kosten told CNN.
This will not only be frustrating, but it will force the patient to seek another method for getting high, maybe even overdosing.
Luckily, this vaccine is still in the experimental stage. Hopefully before the vaccine is released to the public, the treatment time will be realistic for those who need it.
Kwamae Simpkins for the Editorial Board.