Addiction is an increasingly recognized major global public health issue. A growing number of medical specialties, psychological and social science training programs, and professional associations are incorporating addiction as part of their training and continuing education curricula across a broad array of cultures. The need for an International Textbook in this expanding field has therefore become evident. Presenting a world view of the spectrum of addictions-related problems across different cultures, this reference volume highlights the main differences and similarities between clinical practices in the field of Addiction Medicine based on neurobiological similarities as well as epidemiological and socio- cultural differences. While the focus will be on marshalling the empirical evidence in support of the clinical practices, areas where information is mostly experiential will be noted. Examples where an international perspective is critical involve issues such as: the current shift of the smoking epidemic from developed to low and middle-income countries the growing influence on young people from the parental home and local neighborhood to role models potentially continents away the demonstrated benefits and limitations of international drug conventions which on the one hand have contained the problem of illegal drugs versus an increase in the use of a legal drug, like tobacco the need for cost effective translation of the clinical practices of Western health care settings to prevention and treatment strategies adapted to the needs of the rest of the world. This Textbook, which collates the experience and wisdom of more than 100 leaders in the field, is promoted by the International Society of Addiction Medicine (ISAM), founded in 1999, which has as its principal mission the education of practitioners in Addiction Medicine and their trainees worldwide (website: www.isamweb.org).
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