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Rehabilitation in substance dependency: an intervention-research in a military health organization



Ana Maria da Silva Gomes1, Ana Lúcia Abrahão1
1Fluminense Federal University


Problem: The abusive use of alcohol and other drugs constitute a serious public health issue, a fact that is reflected in the rise of substance dependency among military personnel in the Brazilian Army. Objectives: We aim to investigate the implications of the use of drugs by these military personnel, as well as the difficulties in the process of rehabilitation. Method: It is a descriptive qualitative study, performed in a Recovery Center of the Brazilian Army. Data collection: The data was collected through the use of semi-structured interviews, direct observation and the use of the researcher’s field observations through the use of a field notebook. Results: The data analysis will involve the construction of categories which originate from the dat.  We will also analyse the discourses from the interviewed subjects, their gestures, their practices and the exchange of impressions and experiences. The duration of this study will be two years.
Keywords: Military Personnel; Pharmaceutical Preparations; Nursing Care


The gradual rise in the use of psychoactive substances in today’s epidemiological scenario constitutes a serious public health issue. Examples in our daily routine show that the nuisance of substance dependency appears in all areas of the life of the dependent and his family(1). The compulsiveness associated with the use of drugs is related to the motivation to search for such substances, in all sorts of situations.  It is then necessary to understand the meaning of the addiction suffered by these subjects. Such information becomes indispensible for the construction of new goals and necessities associated with the process of rehabilitation with regard to psychoactive substances. The lack of family support constitutes a barrier to effective recovery, which may lead to some relapses. For this reason, the discussion of subjectivity, the support and the moves performed from territorialized actions are fundamental for effective psychosocial rehabilitation, emphasizing the practices of harm reduction and not only related to signs and symptoms such as those found in biomedical models of professional performance(2,3).



What is the perception of the Brazilian Army military personnel hospitalized because of substance abuse, to their involvement with drugs? How does this clientele see the nursing healthcare provided?



The general objective is to analyze the perception of the substance user to his involvement with drugs, and his process of rehabilitation in a Recovery Center of the Brazilian Army. The specific objectives are: to identify the motivations of the addicted military personnel towards a change in attitude, and to the interruption of the use of psychosocial substances; to describe the main principles and difficulties experienced by these personnel; to analyze the implications of treatment and the rehabilitation of substance users for nursing healthcare; and to construct a product of empowerment that provides support so that the nursing teams can offer some healthcare based on the patient’s subjectivity.



This is an intervention-research which adopts a qualitative approach. The scenario of this study will be the Recovery Center of the Brazilian Army. The data will be collected from semi-structured interviews and from direct observations as noted in a field notebook. The population of the study will consist of 15 active military personnel in a treatment against substance abuse program in a voluntary hospitalization regime. The project was approved by the Ethics in Research Committee of the Fluminense Federal University, under protocol #398/11, on December 02nd 2011, CAAE 0414.0258.000-11. In terms of the ethical aspects, we followed Resolution 196/96 of the Brazilian Ministry of Health, that regulates the criteria for research involving human beings.



1. Passos EH, Souza TP. Redução de danos e saúde pública: construções alternativas à política global de guerra às drogas. Psicologia e sociedade. 2011; 23 ( 1 ): 154-62.

2. Ribeiro M, Laranjeira R. O tratamento do usuário de crack, avaliação clínica, psicossocial, neuropsicológica e de risco: terapias psicológicas, farmacoterapia e reabilitação nos ambientes de tratamento. São Paulo: Casa da Leitura Médica; 2010.

3. Oliveira E, Mendonça J. Family member with chemical dependency and consequent burden suffered by the family: descriptive research. Online braz j nurs [ serial in the internet ]. 2012 [ cited 2012 Jun 24 ]. Available from: http://www.objnursing.uff.br/index.php/nursing/article/view/3480.



Project data:
Dissertation project of the program of Professional Master in Assistant Nursing of the Fluminense Federal University.
Approved by the Ethics in Research Committee of the Fluminense Federal University on December 2nd 2011, under CAAE 0414.0258.000-11

Financial Support for the Research: COREN. Grant funding of the Master’s program.




Received: 19/07/2012
Approved: 05/09/2012


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Online Brazilian Journal of Nursing. ISSN: 1676-4285

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