Pubdate: Thu, 19 May 2011
Source: Globe and Mail (Canada)
Copyright: 2011 The Globe and Mail Company
Author: Michael M. J. McGrath, MD


Re Is Addiction Really a Disease? (May 17): Margaret Wente's analogy
of addiction and cancer is incorrect. She makes reference to the high
"recovery rates" of doctors and pilots. As one of these physicians, I
would like to point out I am not recovered but in recovery. The
disease is chronic and all too often fatal. It requires continuing
treatment, most commonly in the form of regular attendance at 12-step
meetings. To suggest that this is not a disease begs the question as
to whether Ms. Wente believes the cure for anorexia is to simply eat
more or if getting over depression involves just thinking happy thoughts.

Michael M. J. McGrath, MD

Queen's University, Kingston
- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.