What Is Methadone : Methadone Drug Information

What Is Methadone

What Is Methadone

What Is Methadone?

What is Methadone ? Methadone is a an opioid medication (a narcotic). It is used for the treatment of pain and for the treatment of opioid addiction.  German scientists produced this medication during the second world war. Some think this was in response to a shortage of morphine.

Methadone came to the United States in 1947.  It was initially used for the treatment of pain. It was particularly helpful because of it’s long length of action.  It was studied in the 1960’s for the use in opioid addiction.

What is methadone being used for today? Methadone now has the dual role of pain management and opioid addiction treatment, among other uses. Methadone is a safe and effective medication according to the FDA and is classified as a Schedule II medication by the DEA. Because of its high addictive effects, methadone is closely regulated. There have been emerging problems with methadone regarding use and deaths.

 What is Methadone ?  The Side Effects

If you are looking for what is methadone side effects, I have previously covered methadone side effects in another post. If you know the side effects of methadone, you will know the side effects of all the opioid drugs because the symptoms are the same.  Other popular opioid medications include: Morphine, Oxycontin, Codeine, Suboxone, Opana, hydrocodone and many other formulations.

The main concern for all opioid medications is the risk of respiratory depression during an overdose.  A person can suddenly stop breathing.  An overdose of methadone can also cause heart arrhythmia (irregular hear beat) and death.  The next major risk of methadone is becoming addicted to is, although this should not be as much of a concern for legitimate users of this medication.

 What is Methadone ?  Drug Interactions

First there are the medications that should not be taken at all with methadone.  These include the opioid agonist-antagonist medications such a suboxone, buprenex, subutex, talwin, nubain, pentazocine, dalgan, and stadol.  These medications can place people who are already on an opioid into sudden opioid withdrawal.  Even stronger drugs similar to this but are direct opioid blockers and will start opioid withdrawal include: naltrexone, naloxone, nalmefine, Revia.  Old antidepressions, the MAI inhibitors such as Nardil or Parnate, can have critical interactions. Finally, Ultram can cause withdrawal.

There is a ridiculously long list of medications from the Physician’s Clinical Support System that can interfere with methadone.  You can open the PDF and look up any medications you may be taking: Methadone Drug Interactions.

Here are some other topics for what is methadone :

Methadone Dosing : Drugs.com

History of Methadone: This is a nice PDF summary

Suboxone Treatment Directory And Methadone Treatment Directory

Dr. Rich is a Board Certified Psychiatrist with licenses in Texas and Hawaii. He specializes in the treatment of opioid addiction with buprenorphine and runs a FREE locator service to find Methadone Treatment including Suboxone treatment of oxycontin addiction. Suboxone Treatment Clinic in your area.
Dr. Rich has written more articles on the cost of oxycontin, buprenorphine (Suboxone) including frequently asked questions and a recent post : How Do I Find A Suboxone Physician?

Resources for ” what is methadone “

Methadone : Wikipedia

Food an Drug Administration (FDA): Methadone

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) : Diversion Control

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

List of narcotic drugs under international control

Methadone Drug Interactions Sheet

Oral Methadone Dosing for Chronic Pain: A Practitioner’s Guide

HOT TOPICS In Buprenorphine Treatment

A webinar series offered by the American Psychiatric Association as part of
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Once registered, the webinar is viewable at later times. This webinar is not worth CME credits. Please contact PCSS-B for more information related to this
webinar at http://www.pcssb.org/.

Need Help – I take a very high dose

Author: substation

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 6:30 pm

That does seem to be a really high dose. What was the reason for raising the dose higher? Was it because of cravings? I really hope they didn’t have you go from 8mgs straight to 24mgs.

I’m not sure what your relationship is with your doctor but contrary to some doctor’s belief it should be a joint effort in order to come up with the best strategy. The patient should have some say especially when dealing with a drug like Suboxone.

If you feel that it’s too high a dose and you could manage with less, than you need to speak with your doctor. If he/she is unwilling to lower than you need to look else ware. I knew someone in a similar situation and what he did was just taper himself and keep the remainder. I’m not recommending this just mentioning.

Let us know more information. There are a lot of people that can help you here. Also I wouldn’t lose hope because you’re at such a high dose. I think if you research you will find tapering from a high dose isn’t what’s hard. It’s when you get down to around 2mgs it gets hard. What I’m saying is you’re really not in any worst situation than someone taking 8mgs that also wants to quit subs.

Klonopine help?

Author: lamerjay

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 6:53 pm

I have been on 0.5mg of sub for 3 weeks now and am doing well. It’s still hard not to take subs though because of the WD symptoms. Is klonopine the answer? Can I take a low dose of klonopine for 2 or 3 weeks while I get the sub out without starting a new addiction? I don’t want to be dependent on something new.

Opiate Replacement Therapy is not a Cure!

Author: Ironic

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:08 pm

Bboy42287 wrote:
I am putting this in the anger section because I have heard or seen this way to many times and think we should have this thread on the forum to help newcomers, friends, partners and family understand by just taking suboxone/methadone is not the cure, you are far from being in the clear. Yes it is a great start but addiction doesn’t just up and go because you are taking one of these medications and things won’t change unless you make things change!

But it is all to common in the early stages of treatment people blame the medications and say they are not working because they have relapsed. There is so much to recovery than a pill and I think we need to help uneducated people understand this. And yes not everyone needs counseling groups or whatever it maybe but the average addict can’t do it without these things.

Think about this. Maybe not everyone cares to sign up for AA/NA.

I know personally, the only thing I have to do to not use is not take a needle, put dope in it, and stick it in my arm. I don’t believe that God or the table I call my higher power or whatever can stop me from doing that. Only I can.

I chose this link because he displays and cites MULTIPLE studies showing that AA is no more effective than no treatment.

Some of us are interested in using religion to get better, and some of us just care to use facts.

This is a link to an article citing studies about the effectiveness of buprenorphine.

**I had to take the citations out, but I will add them in 48 hours when allowed by the forum.**

Official 12 Step Stance on Suboxone

Author: Ironic

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:19 pm


Regarding Methadone and Other
Drug Replacement Programs

This bulletin was written by the World Service Board of Trustees in 1996. It represents the views of the board at the time of writing.

Not all of us come to our first NA meeting drug free. Some of us were uncertain about whether recovery was possible for us and initially came to meetings while still using.

Others came to their first meetings on drug replacement programs such as methadone and found it frightening to consider becoming abstinent.

One of the first things we heard was that NA is a program of complete abstinence and "The only requirement for membership is the desire to stop using." Some of us, upon hearing these statements, may have felt that we were not welcome at NA meetings until we were clean. But NA members reassured us that this was not the case and we were encouraged to "keep coming back." We were told that through listening to the experience, strength, and hope of other recovering addicts that we too could find freedom from active addiction if we did what they did.

Many of our members, however, have expressed concern about individuals on drug replacement programs. Questions come up regarding such individuals’ membership status, ability to share at meetings, lead meetings, or become trusted servants on any level. "Are these members clean?" they ask. "Can one really be a ‘member’ and still be using?"

Perhaps by answering the most important question first—the issue of membership—we can establish a context by which to approach this issue. Tradition Three says that the only requirement for NA membership is a desire to stop using. There are no exceptions to this. Desire itself establishes membership; nothing else matters, not even abstinence. It is up to the individual, no one else, to determine membership. Therefore, someone who is using and who has a desire to stop using, can be a member of NA.

Members on drug replacement programs such as methadone are encouraged to attend NA meetings. But, this raises the question: "Does NA have the right to limit members participation in meetings?" We believe so. While some groups choose to allow such members to share, it is also a common practice for NA groups to encourage these members (or any other addict who is still using), to participate only by listening and by talking with members after the meeting or during the break. This is not meant to alienate or embarrass; this is meant only to preserve an atmosphere of recovery in our meetings.
Our Fifth Tradition defines our groups’ purpose: to carry the message that any addict can stop using and find a new way to live. We carry that message at our recovery meetings, where those who have some experience with NA recovery can share about it, and those who need to hear about NA recovery can listen. When an individual under the influence of a drug attempts to speak on recovery in Narcotics Anonymous, it is our experience that a mixed, or confused message may be given to a newcomer (or any member, for that matter) For this reason, many groups believe it is inappropriate for these members to share at meetings of Narcotics Anonymous.

It may be argued that a group’s autonomy, as described in our Fourth Tradition, allows them to decide who may share at their meetings. However, while this is true, we believe that group autonomy does not justify allowing someone who is using to lead a meeting, be a speaker, or serve as a trusted servant. Group autonomy stands only until it affects other groups or NA as a whole. We believe it affects other groups and NA as a whole when we allow members who are not clean to be a speaker, chair a meeting, or be a trusted servant for NA.

Many groups have developed guidelines to ensure that an atmosphere of recovery is
maintained in their meetings. The following points are usually included:

Suggesting that those who have used any drug within the last twenty-four hours refrain from sharing, but encouraging them to get together with members during the break or after the meeting.
Abiding by our fellowship’s suggested clean time requirements for service positions.
Seeking meeting leaders, chairpersons, or speakers who help further our primary purpose of carrying the message to the addict who still suffers.
We make a distinction between drugs used by drug replacement programs and other prescribed drugs because such drugs are prescribed specifically as addiction treatment. Our program approaches recovery from addiction through abstinence, cautioning against the substitution of one drug for another. That’s our program; it’s what we offer the addict who still suffers. However, we have absolutely no opinion on methadone maintenance or any other program aimed at treating addiction. Our only purpose in addressing drug replacement and its use by our members is to define abstinence for ourselves.
Our fellowship must be mindful of what kind of message we are carrying if a still-using addict leads a meeting, or becomes a trusted servant. We believe that under these circumstances we would not be carrying the Narcotics Anonymous message of recovery. Permissiveness in this area is not consistent with our traditions. We believe our position on this issue reinforces our recovery, protects our meetings, and supports addicts in striving for total abstinence.
Note: This bulletin addresses the use of methadone maintenance as a drug replacement strategy. It is not addressing the medicinal use of methadone as a pain killer. We encourage those who have concerns about the use of methadone in pain management to refer to Narcotics Anonymous pamphlet, In Times of Illness.

I would include a link, but I cannot until I have been a member longer.

How can anyone be on Suboxone and in NA? People in the rooms used to tell me I could, but obviously the powers that be do not agree.

This Angers Me

Author: Ironic

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:23 pm

Bboy42287 wrote:
And at the same time i know alot of Sub Doctors actually put the trust in the patient to attend meetings and get self help but lie about it pretty much taking advantage of the trust the Dr gives you. And not everyone does this but i personally know alot of people who did during my time on suboxone and i am sure people still do it today.

Not everyone drinks the NA kool aid. How can you say "doctors actually put the trust in the patient to attend meetings and get self help.."

NA is not a proven treatment for addiction. Nowhere can I find a study that puts the AA/NA rate higher enough than the spontaneous recovery rate that a doctor/scientist felt comfortable saying "This is what works!"

New To Suboxone, Experienced info. needed!

Author: robinfa

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:30 pm

I agree with Breezy_ann. wowza you probably thought you were about to loose it for sure. Go with the lower dose and read the induction thread. There is a ton of info here. I started out on 4mg BID and decreased every 4th day to 6, 4, 3, 2, 1 ,.5, .125 and off in 30 days. No problem at all! I was only on OxyContin 50 mg a day.

Everyone is different, this is YOUR journey. Do what you need to do to stay stable and without cravings. The sleepiness and other symptoms should lessen each day. If not call that doctor.

Welcome and good LUCK! R

Hypnic jerks, while awake?

Author: blackberrybunny

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:32 pm

Hello you guys,

I saw my sub doctor today and he told me the jerks and twitches and runny nose are all part of still going through withdrawel. I’ve only been on suboxone for a month or so now. AND when I told him I was still having mild cravings, he upped my dosage to the max— 32mg a day!! Assured me about how safe this medicine is, and that since it has taken away all of my back pain, there is no reason I could not stay on it for the rest of my life. (I’m only 43).

So the diarrhea I had last night, the upset queasy stomach and the restless legs and all are all symptoms of withdrawel, of which I can expect another month of.

Also, I have fractured my foot and it’s been hurting for 3 months. I asked him why–how can it take away all of this chronic back pain, but not the lesser pain of my foot?—- and he said Suboxone works on a different neuro-pathway in the body.

Hope this helps some of you. Wink