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Logo of jabaJournal of Applied Behavior Analysis Web SiteSubscriber LoginJournal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior Web SiteSubscription InformationInformation for AuthorsJournal of Applied Behavior Analysis Web SiteJournal of Applied Behavior Analysis Web Site
J Appl Behav Anal. 1991 Winter; 24(4): 657–665.
PMCID: PMC1279622

Contingent reinforcement of abstinence with individuals abusing cocaine and marijuana.


Two males diagnosed with cocaine dependence received a behavioral intervention comprised of contingency management and the community reinforcement approach. During the initial phase of treatment, reinforcement was delivered contingent on submitting cocaine-free urine specimens. The community reinforcement approach involved two behavior therapy sessions each week. Almost complete cocaine abstinence was achieved, but regular marijuana use continued. During a second phase, reinforcement magnitude was reduced, but remained contingent on submitting cocaine-free specimens. Behavior therapy was reduced to once per week. Cocaine abstinence and regular marijuana use continued. Next, reinforcement was delivered contingent on submitting cocaine- and marijuana-free specimens. This modified contingency resulted in an abrupt increase in marijuana abstinence and maintenance of cocaine abstinence. One- and 5-month follow-ups indicated that cocaine abstinence continued, but marijuana smoking resumed. These results indicate that the behavioral intervention was efficacious in achieving abstinence from cocaine and marijuana; maintenance, however, was achieved for cocaine only.

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