About Dr. Stuart Wasser

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Dr. Stuart Wasser was born in 1961 and has always lived in and around New York City.  He went undergrad at Columbia University followed by medical school at NYU.  After completing an Internal Medicine residency at North Shore University Hospital on Long Island, he settled in to work in and around Long Island.  He became board certified in Internal medicine in 1989.

 

His first job involved working in an inpatient detoxification unit in 1989.  This job eventually expanded to involve working at two other inpatient detoxification units as well as an inpatient rehabilitation unit.  Eventually, he became medical director of two outpatient facilities.  He obtained certification from the American Society of Addiction Medicine in 1992 and was in the first group of physicians certified by the American Board of Addiction Medicine. 

 

In 1996, while medical director of an inpatient detox facility, he began to see more and more patients turned away from the unit because their insurance companies felt they could be detoxified as an out patient.  However, there were no such places to do this.  He was always one to try new ideas so he began to develop protocols for outpatient detox.  Detox protocols now exist for opiates, sedatives, alcohol, cocaine and other stimulants.  Approaches exist for other drugs as well, including marijuana.

 

Once this treatment was moved into the outpatient arena, the kind of patients who presented for drug treatment changed.  He began to find patients who were in chronic pain presenting for detox.  Doctors who identified these patients as drug addicts referred them.   Since there was increasing awareness of the value of opiates for chronic pain, he began to use opiates for this purpose.  Some patients did well while others used their medications inappropriately.

He no longer does pain management but he recognizes that opiate medication is often an essential part of a multi-faceted approach to pain.  However, as an addiction specialist, he never loses sight of the problems that can occur with use of these medications.


In 1998, he opened his own practice dedicated to the above but also continues to practice general internal medicine. He has had the same staff since he began.  

 

When Suboxone became available he was among the very first to begin using this.  He believes that the default approach should be to get patients off of all opiates including Suboxone; yet, for some, maintenance with Suboxone may be the best alternative

 

Recently, he has realized that there is an increasing literature demonstrating the similarity of overeating tendencies to the tendencies to use drug and alcohol.  He has found that many drugs, described as beneficial to suppressing alchol and drug cravings, suppress food cravings as well and lead to weight loss.

 

Dr. Wasser is married to his wife, Jill, for over 25 years.  He has two children, Bradley and Maris.  He even somehow got shanghaied into getting a dog, a Shih-tsu named Genny.   They all live happily ever after (except when there is homework to be done).

 

His one regret is spending too much time on the computer. 

 

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