An eminent French cardiologist has triggered an impassioned debate in the medical world over his claim to have discovered a cure for alcoholism.
By Hugh Scholfield
Dr Olivier Ameisen, 55, one of France’s top heart specialists, says he overcame his own addiction to alcohol by self-administering doses of a muscle-relaxant called baclofen.
He has now written a book about his experience – Le Dernier Verre (The Last Glass) – in which he calls for clinical trials to test his theory that baclofen suppresses the craving for drink.
Widespread media coverage of his book in France has led to a rush of demands from alcoholics for similar treatment, and some doctors have reported unexpected successes after prescribing it.
But many other specialists are sceptical, warning of the dangers of so-called miracle cures.
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