Factors associated with methadone treatment duration: A Cox regression analysis

Chao Kuang Lin, Chia Chun Hung, Ching Yi Peng, En Chao, Tony Szu Hsien Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


This study examined retention rates and associated predictors of methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) duration among 128 newly admitted patients in Taiwan. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to obtain demographic and drug use history. Daily records of methadone taken and test results for HIV, HCV, and morphine toxicology were taken from a computerized medical registry. Cox regression analyses were performed to examine factors associated with MMT duration. MMT retention rates were 80.5%, 68.8%, 53.9%, and 41.4% for 3, 6, 12, and 18 months, respectively. Excluding 38 patients incarcerated during the study period, retention rates were 81.1%, 73.3%, 61.1%, and 48.9% for 3 months, 6 months, 12 months, and 18 months, respectively. No participant seroconverted to HIV and 1 died during the 18-months follow-up. Results showed that being female, imprisonment, a longer distance from house to clinic, having a lower methadone dose after 30 days, being HCV positive, and in the New Taipei city program predicted early patient dropout. The findings suggest favorable MMT outcomes of HIV seroincidence and mortality. Results indicate that the need to minimize travel distance and to provide programs that meet women's requirements justify expansion of MMT clinics in Taiwan.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0123687
JournalPloS one
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Apr 14

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General


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