The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has finally granted approval to Probuphine, a device that is implanted into patients and that dispenses buprenorphine, an anti-addiction drug. The medication helps prescription drug addicts to kick their drug habits and get back on the road to recovery and good health.
At this time, most medication-assisted treatment options for opioid addiction are limited to buprenorphine, methadone and naltrexone. These anti-addiction drugs can be extremely effective at helping patients to decrease their dependency on painkillers and heroin. However, they can also lead to further abuse and addiction if misused by the patient. That’s why the FDA has approved the implant device to properly administer buprenorphine in the recommended dosage amounts.
Addiction to prescription painkillers and other opioids can have tragic consequences. In 2014, more than 28,000 people died as a result of prescription opioid overdoses and heroin overdoses, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This amounts to one accidental overdose death every 19 minutes. That’s a major reason why the FDA recently approved the new addiction-treatment option.
Using Probuphine to Treat Drug Addiction
When installing the implant device, doctors place four small rods underneath the skin of the patient’s upper arm. The device then slowly releases anti-addiction medication directly into the patient’s bloodstream.
Although buprenorphine could be administered by hand, health officials settled on the use of an implant device because they believe that this will help to guard against overuse of the opioid medication. The fear is that addicts will not take the medicine in the required dosages.
The hope now among federal health officials is that drug addicts who might otherwise shy away from treatment will seek help for their addictions because the implant device is extremely easy to use.
The cost of the new treatment is said to be roughly $6,000, so FDA approval should prove crucial in helping patients get support from their health insurance companies to potentially cover the additional expenses.
For more information, view the CNN.com article, “FDA Approves Device to Wean Addicts off Heroin.”
If you or a loved one has been charged with illegal possession of prescription drugs, heroin possession, marijuana possession, or any other drug offense, you need to talk to a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. The aggressive criminal defense attorneys at Rudnick, Addonizio, Pappa & Casazza PC can help you fight your drug crime charges and avoid the most severe penalties. Contact us now to schedule a free consultation about your case.