BACKGROUND: Alcohol use disorders (AUDs) are highly prevalent among persons living with HIV (PLH) within the criminal justice system (CJS). Extended-release naltrexone (XR-NTX) has not been previously evaluated among CJS-involved PLH with AUDs.
METHODS: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted among 100 HIV+ prisoners with AUDs. Participants were randomized 2:1 to receive 6 monthly injections of XR-NTX or placebo starting one week prior to release. Using multiple imputation strategies for data missing completely at random, data were analyzed for the 6-month post-incarceration period. Main outcomes included: time to first heavy drinking day; number of standardized drinks/drinking day; percent of heavy drinking days; pre- to post-incarceration change in average drinks/day; total number of drinking days; and a composite alcohol improvement score comprised of all 5 parameters.
RESULTS: There was no statistically significant difference overall between treatment arms for time-to-heavy-drinking day. However, participants aged 20-29 years who received XR-NTX had a longer time to first heavy drinking day compared to the placebo group (24.1 vs. 9.5days; p<0.001). There were no statistically significant differences between groups for other individual drinking outcomes. A sub-analysis, however, found participants who received ≥4 XR-NTX were more likely (p<0.005) to have improved composite alcohol scores than the placebo group. Post-hoc power analysis revealed that despite the study being powered for HIV outcomes, sufficient power (0.94) was available to distinguish the observed differences.
CONCLUSIONS: Among CJS-involved PLH with AUDs transitioning to the community, XR-NTX lengthens the time to heavy drinking day for younger persons; reduces alcohol consumption when using a composite alcohol consumption score; and is not associated with any serious adverse events.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.