Chapter 6
Detoxification: 2004

The Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) records the type of service to which clients are admitted for treatment. The categories used are broadly defined as ambulatory, rehabilitation/residential, and detoxification. (See Appendix B for details.)

In 2004, 61 percent of admissions were to ambulatory (intensive or non-intensive outpatient) treatment, 22 percent were to detoxification (free-standing residential, hospital inpatient, or ambulatory), and 17 percent were to rehabilitation/residential treatment [Table 3.6]. Admissions to detoxification treatment represent a special category of admissions. They are generally initiated because of an acute need for medical care. Detoxification is ideally followed by a transfer to either outpatient or rehabilitation/residential treatment. However, this may not occur, or may not be traceable in the TEDS data collection system. (See Chapter 1.)

TEDS records three types of detoxification services. These are:

In 2004, 73 percent of detoxification admissions were to free-standing rehabilitation/residential detoxification, 19 percent were hospital inpatient, and 8 percent were ambulatory [Table 6.3].

Tables 6.1a, 6.1b, and 6.2a. Four-fifths of admissions to detoxification were for primary alcohol (49 percent) or opiates (31 percent). Cocaine accounted for 11 percent of detoxification admissions, and stimulants and marijuana for 4 percent and 2 percent, respectively. The demographic characteristics of admissions to detoxification were slightly different than those for all admissions [Tables 3.1a and 3.2a]. Detoxification admissions were more likely to be male (75 percent vs. 69 percent of all admissions), Hispanic (16 percent vs. 13 percent of all admissions), and older (average age 38 vs. average age 34 for all admissions).

Figure 39. This figure shows, separately for males and females, the number of admissions by age for the most common primary substances. Male detoxification admissions greatly outnumbered female detoxification admissions. Among admissions under age 40, admissions for opiate abuse outnumbered those for alcohol abuse among both males and females.

Figure 39
Detoxification admissions by sex, age, and primary substance: TEDS 2004

Line chart comparing Detoxification admissions by sex, age, and primary substance in TEDS 2004

SOURCE: Office of Applied Studies, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS). Data received through 2.1.06.

Table 6.3. Admissions to detoxification were more likely to be self- or individual referrals (60 percent) than were all admissions (34 percent) [Table 3.5] and less likely to enter treatment through the criminal justice system (12 percent vs. 36 percent). For heroin admissions to detoxification, opioid treatment (treatment with the medications methadone or buprenorphine) was less likely to be planned than it was for all heroin admissions (17 percent vs. 31 percent) [Table 3.6].

Table 6.4. Daily use was reported by 77 percent of detoxification admissions, compared with 42 percent of all admissions [Table 3.4]. More than one-third of detoxification admissions (38 percent) were entering treatment for the first time, compared with 43 percent of all admissions, and 19 percent had been in treatment five or more times previously, compared with 10 percent of all admissions [Table 3.5].

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