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What Is Opioid addiction?

Opioid addiction is an epidemic. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, There were about more than 70,000 deaths from drug overdose and 47,600 deaths from any opioids (prescribed or non-prescribed). As the Awareness for opioid addiction is still at early stages, it has become one of the important topics in the healthcare industry as one of the preventable health disorder.

Prescribed Opioids include Codeine, morphine, hydromorphone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, fentanyl and Methadone. Physicians prescribe some of these medications for pain control. Though the primary purpose is for pain control; it also gives a sensation of elation or euphoria. This side effect drives an individual to crave the medication even more. What becomes a pleasurable experience after a long term exposure becomes a way of life where one cannot live without. It is difficult to predict which individual is likely to become addicted. Socioeconomic factor, stress at work, chronic pain may be contributing factors.

Addiction can affect a person profoundly, they are unable to keep a job, hold on to family life or maintain a job. Their professional and personal life is consumed by their caring for opioids. “


What Is Buprenorphine?

Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist, which bind to the Opioid Receptor with high affinity and prevents other Opioid medications from binding to the same receptor.

The advantage of using this medication is due to its “ceiling effect”. Ceiling effect or plateauing effect means the medication reaches a maximum effect following certain dosing. Any further increase does not provide any more benefit and hence prevents the drug from being used for its euphoric effect.


How does Buprenorphine work?

Buprenorphine acts as a partial agonist at the mu-receptor and has a long duration of action. Methadone, on the other hand, is a full opioid agonist. The long duration of action of Buprenorphine is secondary to its high affinity for its receptor. This lowers the potential for serious side effects including breathing suppression.

The medication is metabolized by your liver through the activity of a special enzymatic pathway called Cytochorme P450 pathway.  Once metabolized, it is removed through the biliary system.


What formulation are available for opioid use disorder?

Buprenorphine comes in various formulations.

Oral: Sublingual Tablets (Generic, [email protected]), sublingual film ([email protected] film), Buccal film ([email protected]). These are used for induction and maintenance.

Subdermal implants: [email protected] Used mainly for maintenance therapy once a good control is achieved on oral formulation.


How do we treat Opioid use disorder in our center?

Here at RESTORE, we strive to provide a discrete and individualized plan for you. We carry you through this difficult journey paying attention to details and giving a close follow up care.

The formulation that we use in our center, is primarily Buprenorphine with Naloxone combination, administered as sublingual tablets or films.

There is a certain advantage for using the combination medication.  This medication likely prevents abuse. When this medication is used sublingually, the effect of buprenorphine predominates and naloxone prevents withdrawal. But if the tablet is crushed and injected, the effect of naloxone will supersede and induce opioid withdrawal.

In order to get the best outcome to prevent relapse, psychological counseling is highly recommended. We will be involving psychologist specializing in addiction medicine to provide this service for you, or you can use psychologist of your choice.


What is the procedure to join the program?

First, we require that you fill in the online intake form.

Client selection is based on certain criteria. Due to the complexity of certain addiction, at this time we invite people only with opioid addiction excluding heroin.  We may elect to treat pregnant women on a case by case basis. We treat mainly individuals at or above 21 yrs of age.