Glossary < J – V >

Glossary < A – I >



Agonist (Agonista)

A substance that acts at a neuronal receptor to produce effects similar to those of a reference drug; for example, methadone is a morphine-like agonist at the opioid receptors. It has the opposite effect to an antagonist.

Source: WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms, EMCDDA website


Alternatives to imprisonment / Diversion (Elterelés)

A range of measures that replace prison sentences for those who have committed an offence normally punished by imprisonment by national law. The focus is those measures that include drug treatment.
In Hungary, regarding drug-related alternatives to imprisonment, if a person suspected of using drugs enters treatment for drug-addiction or other drug related treatment or preventive-consulting service treating drug use on a voluntary basis for at least 6 consecutive months, it may create grounds for the termination of culpability.

Source: UK Focal Point; Hungarian National Report to the EMCDDA 2006.


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Antagonist (Antagonista)

A substance that counteracts the effects of another agent. Pharmacologically, an antagonist interacts with a neuronal receptor to inhibit the action of agents (agonists) that produce specific physiological or behavioural effects mediated by that receptor. An example is the drug Naloxone that is used to treat overdose from opiate drugs, especially heroin.

Source: WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms


Antagonist treatment (Antagonistával való kezelés)

Treatment of narcotic addiction by using a medication that acts against opiate’s action or action of any other drug to which a person is addicted.

Source: EMCDDA Structured questionnaire 31 (2006)


Blood-borne virus (Vérrel terjedő vírus)

A virus which can be transmitted from an infected person to another person by blood-to-blood contact, such as through blood transfusion or the sharing of injecting equipment. The most notable blood-borne viruses are HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


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Capture-Recapture Method (Fogás-visszafogás módszer)

The capture-recapture method, that is used to estimate the prevalence of problem drug use combines data from different sources, e.g., the health system and the criminal system. Each problem drug user is either in both samples or only in the health data base or only in the criminal data base or in none of the two data bases. The number of problem drug users found in the data bases can be arranged in a table and the number of those being in none of the two data bases cannot be observed and has to be estimated from the remaining cells of the table. Restriction is the assumption of independence: Being recorded in one system does not change the probability of being recorded in the other system. Or in more technical terms: The ratio of identified persons being in both samples to the total sample of the criminal system is assumed to be the same as the ratio of the sample of the health system to the whole population.

Source: Methodological guidelines to estimate the prevalence of problem drug use on the national level


Case management (Eset menedzsment)

When the process of treatment is individually managed, from the first steps of treatment planning through the next step of treatment delivery to the final step of termination and discharge from treatment.

Source: EMCDDA Structured questionnaire 27 (2005) and structured questionnaire 31 (2006)


Cold turkey (Száraz megvonás)

A commonly used slang term for the process of sudden drug withdrawal unassisted with any form of drug treatment. This method of detoxification is still used both in government centres and by traditional healers in some developing countries.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


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Community based prevention (Prevenció közösségi alapú megközelítése)

“Community” is for operational reasons limited only to community as a setting (i.e. environment) contrary to a larger and more developed meaning of community as an active social network of participating individuals independently from their professional background. This participatory character of community-based prevention is not a universal principle throughout Europe, which has made it impossible to describe community-based prevention in a comparable manner for a long time. Therefore, the only feasible way to compare community-based prevention interventions across member states is using a minimal common denominator – i.e. “community” just as a geographical and administrative setting – for a comparable information collection.

Source: EMCDDA Structured questionnaire 22/25


Co-morbidity (Dual diagnosis) (Komorbiditás,Betegségtársulás, Kettős diagnózis)

A general term referring to co-morbidity or the co-occurrence in the same individual of a psychoactive substance use disorder and another psychiatric disorder. Less commonly, the term refers to the co-occurrence of two psychiatric disorders not involving psychoactive substance use. Two main groups of co-morbid drug users are recognised, each with distinct profiles. One group is dominated by people with psychiatric illness and the second group is characterised by drug dependency.

Source: EMCDDA – Drugs in Focus 2004/ 14.


Cross-dependence (Keresztfüggőség)

A pharmacological term used to denote the capacity of one substance (or class of substances) to suppress the manifestations of withdrawal from another substance or class and thereby maintain the physically dependent state. Note that “dependence” is normally used here in the narrower psycho- pharmacological sense associated with suppression of withdrawal symptoms. A consequence of the phenomenon of cross-dependence is that dependence on a substance is more likely to develop if the individual is already dependent on a related substance. For example, dependence on a benzodiazepine develops more readily in individuals already dependent on another drug of this type or on other substances with sedating effects such as alcohol and barbiturates.

Source: WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms


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Cross-tolerance (Kereszttolerancia)

The development of tolerance to a substance, to which the individual has not previously been exposed, as a result of acute or chronic intake of another substance. The two substances usually, but not invariably, have similar pharmacological effects. Cross-tolerance is apparent when a dose of the novel substance fails to produce the expected effect

Source: WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms


Demand reduction (Kereslet-csökkentés)

International drug control conventions use this term in relation to the aim of reducing consumer demand for controlled substances. Demand reduction strategies contrast with approaches which aim at reducing supply of drugs though in practice demand and supply reduction can be complementary. The success of demand reduction is conventionally measured by a reduction in the prevalence of use, i.e. by more abstinence, and hence is separate and distinct from harm reduction.
Demand reduction is a broad term used for a range of policies and programmes which seek a reduction of desire and of preparedness to obtain and use illegal drugs. Demand for drugs may be reduced through prevention and education programmes to dissuade users or potential users from experimenting with illegal drugs and/or continuing to use them; drug substitution programmes
(e.g. methadone); treatment programmes mainly aimed at facilitating abstinence, reduction in frequency or amount of use; court diversion programmes offering education or treatment as alternatives to imprisonment; broad social policies to mitigate factors contributing to drug use such as unemployment, homelessness and truancy.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


Detoxification (Detoxifikáció)

The process by which a person who is dependent on a psychoactive substance ceases use, in such a way that minimizes the symptoms of withdrawal and risk of harm. While the term ‘detoxification’ literally implies a removal of toxic effects from an episode of drug use, in fact it has come to be used to refer to the management of rebound symptoms of neuroadaptation, i.e. withdrawal and any associated physical and mental health problems. Traditionally detoxification has been provided on an in-patient basis either in a specialist treatment facility or on the wards of a general or psychiatric hospital.

Detoxification may involve the administration of medication. When it does, the medication given is usually a drug that shows cross-tolerance and cross-dependence to the substance(s) taken by the patient. The dose is calculated to relieve the withdrawal syndrome without inducing intoxication, and is gradually tapered off as the patient recovers.
Detoxification as a clinical procedure implies that the individual is supervised until recovery is complete, both from intoxication and physical withdrawal.

Source: WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms; Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


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 DRID Indicator (DRID Indikátor)

Drug Related Infectious Diseases (hepatitis B/C and HIV), is one of the five key epidemiological indicators used by the EMCDDA to determine the prevalence and health consequences of drug use.

Source: Source: Protocol for the implementation of the EMCDDA key Indicator Drug Related
Infectious Diseases (DRID) – Draft version 2006


Dried Blood Spot (DBS) (Ujjbegyből vett, szárított vérminta vizsgálata)

Blood samples from finger are collected in filter paper and tested for detection of antibodies of Hepatitis B, C and HIV. The method is safe and does not require, at least temporarily, cold storage. The sample is transported in a plastic bag.
Specificity and sensitivity for HIV testing are 87-99%. For HCV, sensitivity ranges from 95 to 99% and specificity from 99 to 100%. For HBV (HBsAg), both are 99%.
Their collection requires training.
Studies indicate that completely dried blood spot specimens may be stored for 1 month at controlled room temperature (17-23 degrees C) and refrigerated (2-8 degrees C) for up to three months as long as they are not exposed to elevated humidity.

Source: Protocol for the implementation of the EMCDDA key Indicator Drug Related
Infectious Diseases (DRID) – Draft version 2006


Drug (Drog)

A term of varied usage. In the various United Nations Conventions and in the Declaration on Drug Demand Reduction it refers to substances subject to international control. (In medicine, it refers to any substance with the potential to prevent or cure disease or enhance physical or mental well-being. In pharmacology, the term drug refers to any chemical agent that alters the biochemical or physiological processes of tissues or organisms.) In common usage, the term often refers specifically to psychoactive drugs, and often, even more specifically, to illicit drugs.
However, caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, and other substances in common non-medical use are also drugs in the sense of being taken primarily for their psychoactive effects. For demand reduction purposes, it is clearly necessary to exclude food stuffs from the coverage of the term ‘drug’ even though these clearly alter mental state and increase a sense of well-being.

Source: WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms; Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


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Drug abuse ( Kábítószerrel való visszaélés)

Current international drug control treaties do not define drug abuse but make reference to a variety of terms, including abuse, misuse, and illicit use. In the context of international drug control, drug abuse constitutes the use of any substance under international control for purposes other than medical and scientific, including use without prescription, in excessive dose levels, or over an unjustified period of time.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


Drug-free treatment (Gyógyszermentes kezelés)

This type of treatment makes no use of drugs (agonists or antagonists) targeted at the drug use itself (such as for instance substitution substances), but may make use of – for example – anti-depressants or benzodiazepines, to achieve and maintain abstinence from illicit drugs.

Source: EMCDDA Structured questionnaire 31 (2006)


Drug offence types (Elkövetési magatartások)

Offence types can be divided into two main categories: demand-related offences and supply-related offences. Demand-related offences are production, manufacturing, acquisition, possession and importing of drugs, while supply-related offences are denoting, offering, supplying, distributing and trafficking drugs.

Source: Hungarian National Report to the EMCDDA 2007


Drug-related death (Kábítószer-fogyasztással összefüggő halálozás)

The EMCDDA definition of drug-related death in the Key Indicator “Drug-related deaths and mortality among drug users” refers to those deaths that are caused directly by the consumption of drugs of abuse. These deaths occur generally shortly after the consumption of the substance(s).

Source: EMCDDA The DRD-Standard, version 3.1


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Drug-related offences (Kábítószerrel-kapcsolatos bűncselekmények)

Crimes committed under the influence of psychoactive substances (consequent crime) and/or misuse of narcotic drugs.


Evidence based medicine (Bizonyítékon alapuló orvoslás)

Evidence based medicine is the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. The practice of evidence based medicine means integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research.

Source: David L Sackett, William M C Rosenberg, J A Muir Gray, R Brian Haynes, W Scott Richardson. Evidence based medicine: what it is and what it isn’t. BMJ 1996; 312:71-2.


Evidence based practice (Bizonyítékon alapuló gyakorlat)

Interventions that show consistent scientific evidence of being related to preferred client outcomes.

Source: Jennifer Hillebrand, Reitox Academy on best practices, 12-13 September, 2007, Oslo, Norway


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Harm reduction (ártalomcsökkentés)

In the context of alcohol or other drugs, harm reduction refers to policies or programmes that focus directly on reducing the harm resulting from the use of alcohol or other drugs, both to the individual and the larger community. The term is used particularly for policies or programmes that aim to reduce the harm without necessarily requiring abstinence. Examples of harm reduction include needle/syringe exchanges to reduce rates of needle-sharing among injecting drug users, and the use of shatterproof glassware to reduce glass injuries in pub brawls.
The term ‘harm reduction’ began to be used more widely in connection with attempts to stop the spread of HIV through the provision of clean injecting equipment to injecting drug users (IDUs) in the early 1980s. Harm reduction measures are aimed at solving problems of a medical and social nature, including the prevention of HIV, viral hepatitis, overdoses and other conditions widespread among injecting drug users.
Harm reduction strategies may be used to achieve lower risk drug use as an intermediate step towards achieving abstinence from drugs. Harm reduction as such is neutral regarding the wisdom or morality of continued drug use and should not be seen as synonymous with moves to legalize, decriminalize or promote drug use.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime; EMCDDA Structured questionnaire 32 (2006); WHO Lexicon of Alcohol and Drug Terms


Hepatitis (viral hepatitis) (Hepatitis (vírus hepatitis))

Hepatitis means “inflammation of the liver”, and the most common cause is infection with one of 5 viruses, called hepatitis A,B,C,D, and E. All of these viruses can cause an acute disease with symptoms lasting several weeks including yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice); dark urine; extreme fatigue; nausea; vomiting and abdominal pain. It can take several months to a year to feel fit again. Hepatitis A and E are typically caused by ingestion of contaminated food or water. Hepatitis B, C and D usually occur as a result of parenteral contact with infected body fluids (e.g. from blood transfusions or invasive medical procedures using contaminated equipment).
In order to prevent hepatitis infections, in many countries needle exchange programmes were made available for injecting drug users.

Source: WHO


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Hepatitis B (HBV)

Hepatitis B is caused by the Hepatitis B virus, which can cause both acute and chronic hepatitis. Chronic hepatitis develops in the 15% of patients who are unable to eliminate the virus after an initial infection. Identified methods of transmission:
blood transfusion
sharing injecting equipment in intravenous drug use
shaving accessories such as razor blades
touching wounds on infected persons
tattoos (both amateur and professionally done),
sexually (through sexual intercourse or through contact with blood or bodily fluids)
via mother to child by breast feeding (minimal evidence of transplacental crossing).
However, in about half of cases the source of infection cannot be determined. Needle-exchange programmes have been created in many countries as a form of prevention. Patients with chronic hepatitis B have antibodies against hepatitis B, but these antibodies are not enough to clear the infection that establishes itself in the DNA of the affected liver cells.
Since 1990, children of 14 years of age receive a compulsory and free Hepatitis B vaccine in Hungary.

Source: WHO


Hepatitis C (HCV)

Hepatitis C is caused by the Hepatitis C virus. It can be transmitted through contact with blood, mainly by sharing injecting equipment during intravenous drug use (but also including through sexual contact where the two parties’ blood is mixed) and can also cross the placenta. Hepatitis C may lead to a chronic form of hepatitis, culminating in cirrhosis. It can remain asymptomatic for 10-20 years. Patients with hepatitis C are susceptible to severe hepatitis if they contract either hepatitis A or B, so all hepatitis C patients should be immunized against hepatitis A and hepatitis B if they are not already immune, and avoid alcohol. The virus can cause cirrhosis of the liver. HCV viral levels can be reduced to undetectable levels by a combination of interferon and the antiviral drug ribavirin.

Source: WHO



 The common abbreviation for a fatal viral condition known as Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) in which the immune system is weakened and unable to combat infectious diseases. The sharing of injecting equipment among injecting drug users is a major route of transmission for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). HIV is transmitted through unprotected sexual intercourse (anal or vaginal), transfusion of contaminated blood, sharing of contaminated needles, and between a mother and her infant during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding.
This is the virus that causes AIDS, and in many countries has led to programmes discouraging injecting and to the establishment of programmes to make clean injecting equipment more readily available for injecting drug users in order to reduce the likelihood of transmission of the virus through the sharing of used needles and other equipment.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


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An abbreviation for an injecting drug user or injecting drug use. Injections may be intramuscular, subcutaneous, or intravenous (IV).

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


Incidence (Incidencia)


Incidence is defined as the number of new cases displaying a particular phenomenon
arising in a specific geographical area during a specific timescale.

Source: EMCDDA Guidelines for the evaluation of drug prevention intervention


Indicated prevention (Javallott prevenció)

Indicated prevention aims to identify individuals who are exhibiting early signs of substance abuse (but not DSM-IV criteria for addiction) and other problem behaviour and to target them with special interventions. Identifiers for increased individual risk can be falling grades, consumption of alcohol and other gateway drugs, conduct disorders and alienation from parents, school and positive peer groups. Less emphasis is placed on assessing or addressing environmental influences, such as community values. The targets of indicated prevention are exhibiting substance abuse-like behaviour, but at a subclinical level, which is often still within the range of variance of adolescent behaviour. This is a specific challenge for prevention and innovative concepts are required, but not for specific drug treatment services, which in most cases are not prepared to respond to experimenting adolescents’ needs.



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Injecting equipment (Injektáló eszközkészlet)

The paraphernalia used for drug injection. This can include such items as a needle and syringe, a spoon for mixing, some water or acid for dissolving powdered drugs, filter material to draw the solution through when filling the syringe (e.g. piece of cigarette filter, cotton wool, paper), an alcohol swab to clean the injection site, and a tourniquet.

Source: Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime


Inpatient treatment (Fekvőbeteg kezelés)

Treatment in which the patient spends the night in the treatment centre, in a hostel, home or hospital unit. These programmes generally strive to provide a positive drug-free environment in which residents are expected to participate in a full-time programme of counselling, and group work developing social and other life skills.

Source: EMCDDA Structured questionnaire 27 (2005) and structured questionnaire 31 (2006) ; Demand Reduction – A glossary of Terms, ODCCP Studies on Drugs and Crime



Intravenous (drug use)


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