The Department of Psychology welcomes Dr. Kelly Dunn as the third speaker in its 2019-20 Lecture Series: Psychology of the Opioid Crisis. Her topic is "The Promise of Tramadol as a Medication to Treat Opioid Use Disorder."
Tramadol (Ultram) is a Schedule IV analgesic with low abuse liability and opioid-like effects that position it to be a promising medication for opioid use disorder (OUD). This talk will first introduce tramadol and the pharmacological features that distinguish it from other opioid medications before describing the results of a recent randomized controlled trial (RCT) that compared the relative efficacy of tramadol, clonidine, and buprenorphine (Suboxone) as a method of tapering patients off of opioids. The results of a secondary analysis evaluating how individual differences in response to the study medications predicted outcomes will be discussed. Overall, this presentation will introduce methods for evaluating OUD treatment options and highlight the value of applying a personalized medication approach to optimize treatment for persons with OUD.
Dr. Dunn is an associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Her research focuses primarily on the treatment of opioid use disorder using human subjects. She has worked on more than 10 randomized clinical trial evaluations of treatments for patients with opioid use disorder, and has contributed to research regarding medication development for alcohol use disorder and cigarette smoking. She is currently pursing several lines of research regarding methods to enhance opioid treatment outcomes, to improve prevention of opioid overdose, to understand mechanisms underlying the development of opioid use disorder, to reduce concurrent problems among patients with opioid use disorder, and to develop tools for sensitively measuring overdose risk and non-injection drug use behavior with an emphasis on reducing HIV and HCV risk behaviors. Finally, she also has training in the use of incentives (contingency management) to modify behaviors.
This event may be used to satisfy the Lecture Reflection Requirement in PSYC206, PSYC303, PSYC490 and PSYC493/494.