Monthly Archives: May 2013

About Addiction

Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry. Dysfunction in these circuits leads to characteristic biological, psychological, social and spiritual manifestations. This is reflected in an individual pathologically pursuing reward and/or relief by substance use and other behaviors.

Addiction is characterized by inability to consistently abstain, impairment in behavioral control, craving, diminished recognition of significant problems with one’s behaviors and interpersonal relationships, and a dysfunctional emotional response. Like other chronic diseases, addiction often involves cycles of relapse and remission. Without treatment or engagement in recovery activities, addiction is progressive and can result in disability or premature death.

Links to articles worth reading

Determination of Genotype Combinations That Can Predict the Outcome of the Treatment of Alcohol Dependence Using the 5-HT3 Antagonist Ondansetron


The 2013 TnSAM Addiction Medicine Conference was August 29th and 39th, 2013

Powerpoint slides are now available as enduring CME.

TSAM Addiction Medicine

Co-occurring disorders and DSM 5

Opiates and Pregnancy rev-1

Addiction Talking Points part one          Addiction Talking Points part two

Neurobiology of Addiction part one        Neurobiology of Addiction part two

Counseling Skills DBT Lite

MedBriefPsyTx 8 28 13

The University of Tennessee College of Medicine, together with the American Society of Addiction Medicine and the Tennessee Society of Addiction Medicine, presented a 2-day conference on addiction medicine.  130 people registered and attended. The first three-hour conference (8:30 -12 Noon 8/29/13) was an ASAM-sponsored risk evaluation mitigation strategy conference about opiate prescribing.  Titled ER/LA Opioid REMS: Achieving Safe Use While Improving Patient Care, this session addressed our most pressing health problem of prescription drug abuse, was designed in association with the FDA and ASAM, and was offered to everyone at no charge (Free CME!) thanks to a grant.

The remaining day and a half (12 Noon – 4:45 pm 8/29/13 and 8:30 am – 4:45 pm 8/30/13) was sponsored by TnSAM and accredited by the UT College of Medicine (AMA PRA Category 1 Credits for doctors), received Prescribed CME credits form AAFP, and was NAADAC approved for counselors by TAADAS. The conference provided important information on addiction topics, with an outstanding array of topics and speakers:

12:00-1:00 PM  Hooked But Not Hopeless – Sherry Hoppe, Ed.D and Sylvia Yates

1:15-2:15 PM  Tennessee Department of Health and TMA Response to Tennessee’s Prescription Drug Abuse Epidemic – Mitch Mutter, M.D.

2:30-3:30 PM  Dual Diagnoses: Management of co-occurring disorders in Addicted Patients – Terry Holmes, M.D.

3:30-4:30 PM  Opiate Dependency in Pregnancy – Tom Cable, M.D.

8:30-9:30 AM Addiction Medicine Talking Points – John Standridge, M.D.

9:30-10:30 AM  Evidenced-Based Behavioral Treatments for Addiction – James Finch, M.D.

10:45-11:45 AM  The Neurobiology of Reward and Addiction – John Standridge, M.D.

11:45 AM-12:45 PM  Lunch and Learn with Faculty

1:00-4:15 PM  Counseling Skills Workshop: Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Mindfulness – James Finch, M.D. and Jane Finch, L.C.S.W.

The conference was held at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga on August 29 and 30, 2013.

John Standridge, M.D., F.A.A.F.P., F.A.S.A.M., has practiced in addiction medicine since 1979. He serves as Medical Director of the Council for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services Inc. (CADAS) in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He is serving a two-year term, 2013-2014, as president of the Tennessee Society of Addiction Medicine. He actively teaches geriatrics to internal medicine residents as Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine and was Professor and Program Director of a geriatric medicine fellowship in the department of Family Medicine, both at the University of Tennessee College of Medicine Chattanooga. He practices family medicine in a deliberately small office called “Personal Medicine LLC”.
Sherry Hoppe, Ed.D. After almost 20 years as a college and university president, Dr. Sherry Lee Hoppe retired as president from Austin Peay State University (TN) in 2007. Today, she works fulltime writing. Staying clean takes commitment and determination.  Dr. Sherry Hoppe and her sister Sylvia Yates wrote Hooked But Not Hopeless to reveal how an average person can be caught in the far-reaching and unrelenting tentacles of substance abuse.

Mitch Mutter, M.D. serves as Medical Director for Special Projects for the Tennessee Department of Health. Dr. Mutter is board-certified in cardiology and is former president of the Hamilton County Medical Society, the Tennessee Heart Association, the Hamilton County Medical Foundation, and president of the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners. He also founded the Children’s Nutrition Program of Haiti, an effort he established after his first trip to that country in 1988 to provide medical services and develop a grassroots nutrition program.

Tom Cable, M.D. is Medical Director at Volunteer Treatment Center in Chattanooga, a facility that provides medically supervised methadone and buprenorphine maintenance treatment. Dr. Cable is a board-certified family physician with a twenty-one year career in academic medicine prior to his establishment of a private practice at the Optimal Health Institute, which includes buprenorphine maintenance treatment. He is currently a Clinical Professor of Family Medicine with the University of Tennessee College of Medicine Chattanooga.

Terry Holmes, M.D. is Director, Clinical Services, at Moccasin Bend Mental Health Institute and serves as the consulting psychiatrist for the Council for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services Inc. (CADAS) in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

James Finch, M.D. has over 20 years of experience as a specialist in Addiction Medicine, and is the past-president of the North Carolina Society of Addiction Medicine. He is a national speaker on addiction medicine topics. He and his wife, Jane B. Finch, LCSW, provide a wide range of complementary behavioral interventions through the group practice called Changes by Choice: Broad-Based Options for Recovery.

Jane B. Finch, MSSW, LCSW is a clinical social worker in private practice who has specialized in the treatment of addictive disorders for over 15 years. Jane uses her training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Trauma Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR) to help clients manage stress and reduce disturbances associated with underlying traumas. She is certified in Critical Incident Stress Management The ultimate aim is “to create a life worth living,” as Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) would put it. She utilizes DBT, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Enhancement, Imago Relationship Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) and Existential Psychotherapy to help clients achieve their goals.


The Tennessee Society of Addiction Medicine represents a small but dedicated group of physicians, who seek to improve the health and well-being of those who suffer from the disease of addiction. The mission of the Tennessee Society of Addiction Medicine, a state chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, is to improve the care and treatment of people with the disease of addiction and advance the practice of Addiction Medicine.

Our goals include:

  • Increasing access to and improving the quality of addiction treatment;
  • Educating physicians (including students, primary care, addiction specialists and other specialists), other health care providers, legislators and the public;
  • Supporting research and prevention;
  • Promoting the appropriate role of the physician in the care of patients with addiction;
  • Establishing addiction medicine as a specialty recognized by professional organizations, governments, physicians, purchasers and consumers of health care services, and the general public


Current Officers

President   2015-2016
Alexander Zotos, M.D
President-elect   2015-2016
To be elected in April at ASAM conf
Ralph Thomas Reach, M.D.

Past Presidents

John Standridge, M.D., F.A.A.F.P., F.A.S.A.M.
Michael J, Baron, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.S.A.M.
Darrell Arnett, M.D.
Richard Soper, M.D., J.D., M.S., F.A.S.A.M.
Board of Directors
         Serving 2013-2017
John Standridge, M.D., F.A.A.F.P., F.A.S.A.M.  (Chairman)
Alexander Zotos, M.D.
Ralph Thomas Reach, M.D.
         Serving 2013-2015
Richard Soper, M.D., J.D., M.S., F.A.S.A.M.
Michael J, Baron, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.S.A.M.