Shukla L, Shukla T, Bokka S, Kandasamy A, Benegal V, Murthy P, Chand P. Correlates of baclofen effectiveness in alcohol dependence. Indian J Psychol Med 2015;37:370-3
Alcohol dependence is a global concern. Baclofen has shown promise as an anti-craving agent but its efficiency remains to be settled. We reviewed 549 male cases diagnosed with alcohol dependence who received Acamprosate (201) or Baclofen (348). ‘Time to first drink’ was compared between two groups and multiple regression analysis was done in baclofen group to identify correlates of effectiveness. There was a significant difference in outcome measure between Baclofen (M = 4.44, SD = 3.75) and Acamprosate group (M = 3.73, SD = 2.19); t (547) = 2.45, P = 0.01. Initial regression analysis with six predictor variables (average daily alcohol units, current age, age at onset of dependence, family history, duration of dependence and dose of baclofen in mg/day) showed significant correlation of outcome variable with only two predictor variables – dose of baclofen and average daily intake. Using the hierarchical method it was found that ‘dose of baclofen’ and ‘average alcohol intake’ explain a significant amount of variance in ‘time to first drink’. [F (1, 345) = 182.8, P < 0.001, R2 = 0.52, R2 adjusted = 0.51]. This information can be used to select patients in long term longitudinal studies and may explain variable results seen in clinical trials of baclofen done earlier.