Annual Meeting

Symposium Presentations

Thursday, December 7

1:30 pm – 1:45 pm
Opening remarks
George Koob, MD, PhD, Director
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
National Institutes of Health

1:45 pm – 3:45 pm
Symposium I: Cannabis in 2017: Policy and Practice
Kevin Hill, MD, Chairperson; Tony George, MD, FRCPC; Christian Hopfer, MD, DFAPA; and Frances Levin, MD

Summary: As state after state considers medical cannabis and recreational cannabis policies, addiction psychiatrists have an opportunity to promote evidence-based policy and practice. Communities and other healthcare providers are clamoring for more information on the science of cannabis and guidance on how these policies may affect their practices.

Friday, December 8

8:00 am – 9:00 am
Founder’s Award
Recipient John A. Renner Jr., MD

9:00 am – 11:00 am
Symposium II: From Brain Imaging to Bedside and Beyond: Bridging the gap between research and practice in treating Tobacco Use Disorders
Carla Marienfeld, MD, Chairperson; Arthur Brody, MD; Robert Anthenelli, MD; and Doug Ziedonis, MD, MPH

Summary: Tobacco use disorders (TUDs) continue to be extremely common among individuals with mental illness and substance use disorders resulting in a substantial health disparity. This presentation by three experienced tobacco researchers will provide clinically relevant cutting edge research findings to help Addiction Psychiatrists enhance TUDs treatment outcomes. The symposium will progress from 1) understanding innovative use of neuroimaging for characterizing clinical populations and treatment response to 2) new findings about first-line medications and side-effects to 3) methods for implementing psychosocial and organizational interventions.

11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Medical Update “A Medical Update on Sleep and Substance Use”
Kirk Brower, MD

Summary: Insomnia is a common and persistent complaint in patients with substance use disorders (SUDs). Its clinical importance derives from its associations with relapse, suicidal thoughts and behaviors, and co-occurring disorders. While substances may induce insomnia, its etiology is usually multifactorial and warrants a comprehensive assessment to rule out medical, psychiatric, and other sleep disorders. Selection of medication and behavioral therapy follows the assessment to target etiology and symptoms. This update will review the effects of various substances on sleep, clinical evaluation, and treatment for insomnia in patients with SUDs.

Saturday, December 9

9:45 am – 11:45 pm
Symposium III: Behavioral Addictions: challenges of the construct and challenges in treatment
David Atkinson, MD, Chairperson; Iman Parhami, MD; Diana Deister, MD; and Christopher Hammond, MD


Summary: This symposium will generate discussion of behavioral addictions among addiction psychiatrists, and provide a foothold on the application of SUD treatment principles to addictive behaviors. Many people report struggling with what they term “behavioral addictions”, but few seek-out an addiction psychiatrist. Many SUD patients have comorbid behaviors that are as concerning as the substance use. We will discuss some examples of addictive behaviors, review treatment, and propose limits on the proper use of the term “addiction”.

12:45 pm – 2:15 pm
Case Conference: A case of synthetic cannabinoid abuse
Michael Scimeca, MD, Chairperson; Brian Hurley, MD; Thomas Penders, MD; and Cornel Stanciu, MD

Summary: The overall goal of the Case Conference is to reveal the thinking, reactions and clinical approaches that our panel and you, the audience, personally bring to treating patients with addiction problems and to stimulate our audience to become as involved as the presenters in responses and discussion. This year, Dr. Michael M Scimeca will moderate the Conference: a case with problems of synthetic cannabinoid use will be presented our Addiction Fellow, Dr Cornel Stanciu. Drs. Brian Hurley and Thomas Penders will be our special clinicians. Presenters will discuss the many issues that our communities face in the wide availability and use of the forms and names of these protean drugs.

2:15 pm – 4:15 pm
Symposium IV: Buprenorphine or injection naltrexone? Comparative effectiveness and patient-treatment matching (CTN)
Edward Nunes, MD, Chairperson; Joshua D. Lee, MD, MSc; Genie L. Bailey, MD; Marc Fishman, MD; Lars Tanum, MD, PhD; Nikolaj Kunoe, MD; and Andrew Saxon, MD

Summary: Opioid use disorder is a major public health problem across North America and many other parts of the world with increasing prevalence and mortality from overdoses. Fortunately, effective medications exist, including agonist substitution strategies with the full agonist methadone and partial agonist buprenorphine. The antagonist naltrexone was of limited effectiveness when only available in pill form due to poor adherence, but recently developed long-acting injectable naltrexone, as well as long-acting implants in some countries, have shown clear effectiveness compared to counseling without medication, placebo or oral naltrexone.