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The Science of Addiction: From Neurobiology to Treatment (Norton Professional Books) 1st Edition

16 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0393704631
ISBN-10: 0393704637
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The Science of Addiction: From Neurobiology to Treatment (Norton Professional Books) + The Addicted Brain: Why We Abuse Drugs, Alcohol, and Nicotine (FT Press Science)
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Any collection strong in health science needs this. (The Bookwatch)

Erickson clearly has done his homework. [It] is a welcome contribution to the field as a result of his diligence. (Counselor, Bruce Ripley)

Review

Erickson clearly has done his homework. [It] is a welcome contribution to the field as a result of his diligence.

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Product Details

  • Series: Norton Professional Books
  • Hardcover: 312 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1 edition (February 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393704637
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393704631
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,222 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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43 of 47 people found the following review helpful By ETOH DR on December 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
First, let me say that I am a doctor specializing in alcohol and drug studies and the author of over a hundred publications so I have a good perspective of science books, etc. In a sentence, Carl Erickson's book, The Science of Addiction is one of the best books ever published on the subject. Anyone in the field of addiction medicine (e.g., physicians, psychologists, drug/alcohol counselors) or with a personal or other professional interest in addiction will learn from this book. While a bit more advanced than Drugs The Brain and Behavior: The Pharmacology of Abuse and Dependence, by the same author, it is still very readable, fully referenced and current. Two thumbs up to Dr. Erickson.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Lexie Vaughn on October 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Overview:
This review is meant to help prospective readers decide their interest in this book. I hope that the outline and synopsis presented here will help you decide that this book is a great read and one that will increase your knowledge in this growing field!

The Science of Addiction is an extremely fitting title for this book by Carlton K. Erickson as it examines the intricate neurobiology behind substance abuse and dependence. The book is extremely well referenced and written in such way that both an expert in the field and a layman interested in the subject can understand and benefit from reading. I found that this book would be very helpful for someone looking to make biological sense of their addictions, or "dependence syndromes" as Erickson prefers to call them (page 1). Additionally, I found that this book could serve as an excellent resource for anyone interested in furthering their knowledge on the current happening in the field of drug dependence.

Synopsis:
The first few chapters are designated to background information including terminology and basic neuroanatomy. Erickson begins the book by suggesting who can benefit from reading his work. Interestingly he states that the point of the book is to encourage and empower treatment professionals to include proper neurological terminology and applications in their treatments and further their ability to empathize with their patients. He goes on to tear apart the word addiction itself. He certainly has a bone to pick with a society that has perpetuated such an "unscientific" term for what should be referred to as alcohol or drug abuse and/or dependence (page 1). He also presents a bulleted list of three everyday examples of how the term has been misused in our culture.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By magsterz on October 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a good book for those unfamiliar with neurobiology in general, and who are interested in understanding the current neuroscience of addiction. It puts the neuroscience findings in terms that lay people can easily understand, and covers the important bases -- the effects of drugs of abuse; vulnerability to addiction; implications for treatment; and other topics. Specialists who are knowledgeable about the literature may wince here and there when neuroscience is overly simplified or, in a few places, actually incorrect -- but those errors are in the minority and the big picture is quite in keeping with what leading researchers (at the National Institute for Drug Abuse, for example) are currently thinking about the neural mechanisms of addiction.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By amye on February 14, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've always struggled with accepting addiction as a disease, but this book explains it in a way I can accept, and he addressed the main reasons people are reluctant to use the word 'disease.' I also really appreciate the section on terminology and why it's important. I think this book gets to the heart of the science and dispels myths - not via a soapbox but through science. So many substance abuse/dependence books are preachy and I love that this book is not - just the facts, but written interestingly and easy to follow (not like a text book). He really goes into how the brain works and how it's affected. I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in understanding "addiction" through the current science and research.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By B. Covington on December 3, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Few books presently provide an accessible introduction into the science that underlies addiction studies. Especially as the neurobiological community has shifted toward a focus on the physical underpinnings of addiction, such books are invaluable to those who hope to glean from studies that can only otherwise be accessed through field-specific journals. Erickson's book does a decent job of providing this sort of introduction. He covers the development of the concept of addiction in the public forum rather well and maintains a connection with the lived experience of addicts.

Two drawbacks to this book make me uncomfortable rating it more highly than I have: (1) Erickson writes repetitively. Do not expect the concision and directness of a formal text on addiction. Erickson writes in a reflective fashion, which occasionally leads him to come back on the same point more than is necessary for making his point. (2) The title is misleading. If you believe that you're buying a book on addiction in general, you will be sorely disappointed. Erickson quickly takes issue with colloquial uses of addiction and circumscribes his project to exclude elements that many people in our culture would include. That's not to say his circumscription is wrong. It simply means that you'll want to flip through the first chapter or so to see if he covers what you're looking to understand in the concept of addiction.

All in all, the book is a worthwhile addition to the current, limited canon on addiction science for lay readers.
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