Opioid antagonists. I: Pharmacology and rationale for use in treating self-injury

Yadhu N. Singh, Robert W. Ricketts, Cynthia R. Ellis, Nirhay N. Singh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Endogenous opioid peptides have been implicated in the genesis and maintenance of self-injurious behavior. This paper presents an overview of the basic pharmacology of opioid peptides and opioid antagonists and briefly outlines the rationale for using these agents to treat self-injury in individuals with mental retardation. The basic assumption is that self-injury is related to the endogenous opioid system, with two, nonexclusive mechanisms having been postulated that may account for this behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-15
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • opioid antagonists
  • pharmacology
  • self-injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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