Just wondering because I'm seeing aLOT more people being prescribed Methadone for pain relieve then I ever have before..
Alot of the people being prescibed Methadone have had a history of opiate use/abuse and I just wasn't quite sure if this 'TREATMENT' is BECAUSE of the opiate use/abuse OR if it's just another way for the people to deal with there pain thru the use of Methadone...
Methadone does help the pain. Normally it isnt perscribed right off the bat. It gets perscribed after the normal meds stop working or you have to take a dangerous level for them to work. Then the meth is perscribed. My doc tried to get me on it and i am so thankful I said no.
Yes the do use it for both pain and abuse. I am on it for both reasons also and does help a great deal for my pain after 6 back surgery's that little relief I get is taking meds and also knowing that I am not on street and been clean 2 yrs and only on methadone at stable dose of 95mg daily.
Whitie your very right about all ppl that are dying from methadone a lot of them are from using xannax at same time. Is scary stuff!
There have actually been people that have died taking there first dose of methadone You have a hydro addition that is a huge jump to conisoder methadone for pain relief there are so many other drugs and other pain relief choices between narco and methadone .
I suffer from chronic pain as well and I will be honest it took a while to find a combo that was non narcotic that worked for me but I did and my pain level is better now then it was when I was taking narcotics.
CDC: Alarming Increase in Methadone Deaths
Fibromyalgia Slideshow Deaths From Opioid Painkillers Have Tripled Since 1999
By Salynn Boyles
WebMD Health News
Reviewed By Louise Chang, MD
Sept. 30, 2009 -- Methadone deaths have risen sevenfold in less than a decade, according to a government report that largely blames the increase on the growing use of methadone for pain relief.
Used primarily for the management of heroin addiction until the late 1990s, methadone has become one of the most widely prescribed opioid painkillers, with 4 million prescriptions written for pain relief in 2006 alone.
It has also become one of the most deadly drugs around, the report from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) confirms.
The report highlights the rising death rate associated with the use of opioid painkillers such as methadone, morphine, OxyContin, Dilaudid, and Vicodin.
Between 1999 and 2006, according to the report:
Deaths from the use of opioid pain relievers more than tripled in the U.S., from 4,000 in 1999 to 13,800 in 2006.
40% of all poisoning deaths in 2006 in the U.S. involved opioid painkillers.
The number of poisoning deaths involving methadone increased from 790 to 5,420 during this period.
The opioid death rate was highest for whites, males, and people between the ages of 35 and 54.
The Problem With Methadone
The increase in methadone deaths corresponds to the drug's increased use for pain relief, which began abruptly in 1999, says Nicholas Reuter, a public health analyst who has been tracking methadone use and deaths for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Increased concerns about the abuse potential of the pain reliever OxyContin and the desire for a relatively inexpensive long-acting opioid painkiller led to the shift in methadone use.
Last year, 750,000 methadone prescriptions were written for pain relief, but only 250,000 people were treated with the drug for addiction to heroin and other opioids, Reuter tells WebMD.
Methadone can suppress drug withdrawal symptoms as an addiction treatment for 24 hours; the drug's ability to suppress pain lasts just four to eight hours.
But methadone stays in the system as long as 59 hours. Patients may feel they need more pain relief before the drug is cleared from the body, and if taken too often or at doses that are too high, toxic levels can build up, which can lead to life-threatening changes in breathing and heart function.
”Many of the methadone deaths I hear about involve people who just go to sleep at night and never wake up,” Reuter says.
Deadly Mix: Methadone, Sedatives
In a report released last March examining methadone-related deaths, the Government Accountability Office concluded that a lack of knowledge about the “unique pharmacological properties” of the drug among prescribing physicians and patients has contributed to the problem, as has a rise in methadone's use as an illegal street drug.
The newly released NCHS mortality figures were derived from death certificates, so there was no way to know if the drugs were legally prescribed or not.
But at least half of the reported opioid-related deaths involved other drugs, including heroin or cocaine in 15% of cases and benzodiazepines such as Xanax and Valium in 17% of cases.
“The involvement of benzodiazepines -- sedatives used to treat anxiety, insomnia, and seizures -- is particularly troubling as previous studies have shown that people who were prescribed both methadone and benzodiazepine were at greater risk of overdose than those prescribed only one of these drugs,” the report notes.
“We don't know how the people who died got the drugs they took,” NCHS epidemiologist Margaret Warner, PhD, tells WebMD. “Federal agencies, including the Food and Drug Administration and the Drug Enforcement Administration, are looking at methadone to determine how much of the problem is due to the drug getting into the wrong hands.”
Warner, M., National Center for Health Statistics Data Brief, Sept. 30, 2009.
Margaret Warner, PhD, injury epidemiologist, National Center for Health Statistics.
Nicholas Reiter, senior public health analyst, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services.
Government Accountability Office Report: “Methadone Associated Overdose Deaths,” March 26, 2009. Chugh, S. American Journal of Medicine, January 2008; vol 121: pp 66-71.
WebMD Medical Reference: "Opioid Analgesics for Chronic Pain."
Hall, A.J., Journal of the American Medical Association, Dec. 10, 2008; vol 300: pp 2613-2620.
I am glad that you found something to help you. There are days when I wish I had never got on anything at all even methadone. But life is what it is and all we can do is try and make our lives better for us.
Yeah I know we all wished we had not taken that first pill for pain that just ended up taking us down a dark loney road .Now all we can do is make the best and try our best to be strong and make the best desions we can .Rembeber what I said the other day you can make yourself better you have that power !!!!!!!you have already started .
Hey friends... Please don't be concerned about me... I have no NEED or desire to start Methadone.. (I've got 77 days CLEAN)
but I do have a dear friend who is on it now due to their opiate and pain control issues.. so with that said.. THANKS for your concern but MY concerns regarding Methadone lie with my dear friend...
Thank you all for responding as I have gotten alot of GOOD info here and now know how I MAY be ABLE to help my friend...
It seems that Pain Mgmt. Dr.s are uninformed about the efficacy of Methadone for pain management. They are likely mistakenly equating it's long half-life with long lasting pain relief.
From what I've read about methadone use for pain, it's usually only given when all other opiate pain meds have failed, and is intended for life long pain management. For patients who will "have" to be on opiates for the rest of their lives. So consideration of how hard it is to quit does not even enter into the equation in their treatment plans.
Too bad so many of these Drs. don't allow patients to at least temporarily quit drugs like Hydrocodone and Oxy to find out where their baseline for pain is. They go from one extreme to another. Seems they either freak out when a patient wants to quit or worries they may be addicted or dependent and cut them off, or ramp up to methadone.
I agree I just am blown away when I here people say they were put on it to get off of 60mg of oxy as day ..I believe just like every drug it has it place and it would be the right choice for some but there seems to be alot that are digging themselves a deeper whole cuz its not the best chioce for there problem
My doctor freaked when I quit hydro and opana. I mean he was pissed. Not so mad he didn't start me on the scripts again. He keeps pushing methadone, which i am tempted to start cuz my back pain is so bad.
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