Pharmacotherapy for amphetamine and/or methamphetamine use — evidence summary

Summary of the evidence

Unknown effectiveness

A systematic review (Siefried et al., 2020, 43 RCTs, N = 4065) addressing 23 different types of pharmacotherapy for amphetamine and/or methamphetamine use, alone or in combination, found:

  • no evidence of effectiveness of any pharmacotherapy in treating amphetamine and/or methamphetamine dependence. While some drugs demonstrated results that were statistically significantly better than placebo outcomes, the studies were generally small and the samples biased and study protocol completion was low making it impossible to recommend any intervention.

Some weak but positive findings have been demonstrated with stimulant agonist treatment (dexamphetamine and methylphenidate), naltrexone and topiramate.
Future research should address the heterogeneity of AMPH/MA dependence (e.g. coexisting conditions, severity of disorder, differences between MA and AMPH dependence) and the role of psychosocial intervention.


Note: this evidence summary is only valid for the outcomes, target groups, settings and substances/patterns of use described below.

Name of response option:
Pharmacological treatment
Desired outcome(s):
reduce substance use
Specific substance or pattern of use: