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Topic: Suboxone (Buprenorphine)

Posts concerning buprenorphine, often prescribed with naloxone under the brand name Suboxone.

A Review of Buprenorphine Diversion and Misuse Internationally

June 22nd, 2022|

Abstract

Outpatient opioid addiction treatment with sublingual buprenorphine pharmacotherapy (OBOT) has rapidly expanded in the United States and abroad, and, with this increase in medication availability, there have been increasing concerns about its diversion, misuse and related harms. This narrative review defines the behaviors of diversion and misuse, examines how the pharmacology of buprenorphine alone and in combination with naloxone influence its abuse liability, and describes the epidemiological data on buprenorphine diversion and intravenous misuse, risk factors for its intravenous misuse and the unintended consequences of misuse and diversion.

Study of buprenorphine diversion cautions against its misuse

June 10th, 2022|

Buprenorphine is approved in many countries for the treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD), but problems with diversion and abuse exist. There is a need to understand how and why patients use diverted buprenorphine, and whether barriers to access contribute to illicit use.

58% reported a history of diverted buprenorphine use, with 37% never receiving a prescription. Approximately one-half (52%) reported using buprenorphine to get high or alter mood, but few (4%) indicated that it was their drug of choice.

Does NIDA’s new strategy ignore non-drug pathways to recovery?

June 5th, 2022|

The Psychiatry & Behavioral Health Learning Network published online a transcript of a talk given by Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), at the Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit held in Atlanta in April 2022. In the interview, she discusses recent updates on the opioid epidemic and highlights how NIDA is working to shift its focus to actively address the changing landscape of the epidemic. One part of her message was the importance of prevention, stating, "if we do not address the issue of preventing drug use very early, adolescents who are the ones that are starting to experiment, we will always be catching up, new drug for the other."

Doctors, companies push to keep looser rules for prescribing opioid treatment drugs

May 13th, 2022|

WASHINGTON — It got a lot easier for patients with opioid addiction to get their medication remotely during the pandemic — and now addiction doctors and telehealth companies are pushing Congress to make those flexibilities permanent. Before Covid-19, patients had to see a doctor in person for prescriptions to help them with their addictions, like buprenorphine. Now, at least temporarily, they can get them via telehealth appointments. Experts say loosening the rules helped eliminate longstanding barriers to addiction care, like a lack of transportation or a shortage of clinicians who prescribe medically assisted treatment, especially in rural communities. But the changes are temporary, tied to the state of “emergency” associated with the pandemic — and proponents want them made permanent.

Should Buprenorphine Be Made Available Without a Doctor’s Prescription?

April 5th, 2022|

In a July 2019 interview, two faculty of Boston University proposed that buprenorphine start being distributed without a doctor's prescription, with only a pharmacist’s approval. Easier access means that anyone currently struggling with opioid addiction could obtain this drug whenever they chose. But it also means easing restrictions on a drug that is currently abused, sold on the illicit market and addictive. It's time to look at who might profit from their recommendations.

Extended-Release Buprenorphine and Its Evaluation With Patient-Reported Outcomes

March 16th, 2022|

Medications used for the treatment of opioid use disorder are highly effective not only in preventing relapse to drug taking and facilitating recovery but also in preventing overdoses. As such, expanding treatment with medications for opioid use disorders has become a key strategy for addressing the current US overdose crisis, which in 2019 caused 70 630 deaths.1 However, preventing overdoses requires that patients be retained on medications for opioid use disorder, which has been challenging.

The Plusses and Minuses of MAT Drugs

January 24th, 2022|

Methadone and various formulations containing buprenorphine are treatment drugs used in medication-assisted treatment, usually referred to as MAT. These are the MAT drugs approved for treatment of opioid addiction (opioid painkillers, heroin, fentanyl). We will take a look at the minus side as well as the plus side of these opioid addition treatment drugs. Treatment with MAT drugs can be right for some people. But anyone choosing this treatment so they can leave addiction behind should be prepared for the minus side of MAT.

Is an Opioid Distributor Still Seeking to Profit from the Opioid Epidemic?

January 19th, 2022|

In 2018, McKesson committed the astronomical sum of $100 million to support a new non-profit group, the FORE Foundation. Is there any reason, really, to think twice about this collaboration between McKesson and the FORE Foundation? The answer might be "yes." This type of action was one of the tactics used by Purdue Pharma to smooth the path to increased opioid prescribing—getting a non-profit to spend your money making increased use of your products possible. In the end, even this move could be all about profits.

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