Saturday, May 03, 2008

BUPRENORPHINE AND METHADONE:

Vastly different requirements - and practices. For methadone treatment of opiate dependence, 6-7 visits each week are mandated for every single patient for several months after treatment begins. For buprenorphine, there are no requirements whatsoever.

According to data presented on Feb. 21, 2008, by the Director of CSAT, SAMHSA, 35% of patients surveyed reported they had NO return visit to the physician for at least 30 days after the very first prescription for buprenorphine was given (no information was provided as to how many returned after the first 30 days). Clearly, this means that during those first 30 days of treatment there was no urinalysis, no assessment of dosage adjustments that might be indicated, no followup of any possible medical or mental co-morbidities, no determining whether "counseling" as needed and, if so, whether it was received and how effective it was, etc. And yet, the Director's presentation also stated that 40% of prescribing physicians believed buprenorphine treatment to be "very effective" for patients receiving treatment for 8-30 days (one must wonder how they knew).

At the very least, the disparities would seem to cry out for a reassessment of the rationale for the extraordinarily onerous and expensive demands that are imposed on patients and providers alike when the medication employed in treating the disease of opiate addiction is methadone rather than buprenorphine.

7 Comments:

At 7:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

can i bye methadone from you?
my e-mail i zappi@live.se

 
At 9:37 AM, Blogger Sam Martin said...

hi,
im a recovering heroin addict. i've been on methadone for three years. the first two years i wasn't serious about my recovery and i used other drugs. the past year i've been on the straight and narrow, i was wondering if i keep taking methadone forever if there are any medical side effects. (longterm). for a drug user i am very healthy and not to sound elitist but i don't look nearly as tore back as the other patients who stand in line with me each day to get our dose. please i cant seem to find anyone to answer this question.

 
At 11:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Methadone has been demonstrated over decades of maintenance treatment to be safe and effective. You can read more about it in the FAQ section of the web site.

 
At 1:49 AM, Blogger stcktnlinda said...

This is the first time I have ever written to one of these things. But what I would like to say after reading a lot of this stuff is that I have been a herion addict a long time and I am on a maintenance program in Stockton,Ca. When I heard about a program called Suboxone, I heard it was suppossed to help you recover faster and easier than methadone. But when I called to see if I could get on they wanted $400 just to go in and sign up, and than if you did get on the program, it would cost about $400 or $500 a month, and they don't take Med-I-Cal. So as far as I'm concerned these places and Doctors are all in it for the money not because they want to help addicts get clean and straighten out their lives, but to see how much money they can bleed out of them.

 
At 1:55 PM, Blogger Keith Lovett said...

I have been prescribed methadone for 30yrs with the odd break now and then. For the last 8 I have stuck with it exclusively, increasing to 300ml a day at the height of my addiction. I am now on 50ml which just about allows me to function.
In my opinion meth is more destructive than other opioids as it is longer acting and users experience even fewer emotions, however artificial. Buprenorphine is less sedating, possibly even increasing cognitive function and concentration, as with morphine. I can't wait til I get down to 30ml and can make transition.
My blog, Re:Hab, provides information that may be of particular use to readers of this blog. Find it here: http://outernazionalista.wordpress.com/

 
At 3:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

can someone please tell me if i can take methadone to malta

 
At 2:41 PM, Anonymous R Johnson said...

Both methadone and buprenorphine treatment have been proven effective in helping people who are addicted to opiates achieve long-term recovery. Both should be considered only one part of a comprehensive treatment plan which also needs to include education, counseling and holistic healthcare.

 

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