The opiate addiction treatment field continues to look for new treatment approaches for reducing or eliminating the damaging effects of opiates in people’s lives. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, opiate addictions affect a person’s physical, psychological and social health to the point where it becomes difficult to carry out everyday life activities.
Addiction first takes root on a physical level, then evolves into a person’s way of thinking and behaving. As opiate addiction can wreak havoc in multiple areas of a person’s life, different opiate addiction treatment options attempt to target specific aspects of opiate addiction.
Traditional opiate addiction treatment options, such as methadone, burprenorphine and naltrexone therapies have proven somewhat effective in helping recovering addicts remain abstinent; however, each option comes with its own drawbacks. Three new little known opiate addiction treatment options – Vivitrol, Zubsolv and Probuphine – provide many of the same effects as traditional treatments, while solving for some of the problems encountered by traditional treatment models.
Treatment compliance continues to be an ongoing problem within the opiate addiction treatment field as many recovering addicts reach a point where the desire to resume drug use overwhelms their ability to follow drug treatment protocols. This is especially the case with medications like naltrexone, an opiate addiction treatment option designed to block opiate effects and prevent users from getting high.
Vivitrol, a modified version of naltrexone, delivers naltrexone’s effects in injection form, according to the New Your State Office of Alcoholism & Substance Abuse Services. Vivitrol can be injected once every four weeks, which greatly reduces the likelihood of treatment noncompliance. In the process, Vivitrol provides a long-acting opiate addiction treatment option that enables ongoing abstinence from drug use.
Zubsolv Medication Therapy
Zubsolv, a modified formulation of buprenorphine offers another new opiate addiction treatment option. More specifically, Zubsolv attempts to improve upon Suboxone, a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone. Naloxone works in much the same way as naltrexone, by blocking opiate effects in the body.
Like Suboxone, Zubsolv comes in the form of a sublingual tablet, which dissolves under the tongue. Compared to Suboxone, Zubsolv comes in a smaller tablet size, metabolizes faster and has an improved menthol flavor, according to the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration. Zubsolv also works as a long-term maintenance treatment therapy. As with all other medication-based opiate addiction treatment options, Zubsolv should be administered as part of an overall treatment approach that includes ongoing counseling and psychosocial supports.
The Probuphine implant represents yet another advancement in buprenorphine opiate addiction treatment therapies. As buprenorphine in pill form requires daily dosages, missed doses leave a person susceptible to encroaching drug cravings and opiate withdrawal effects. For a recovering opiate addict, increased drug cravings can easily result in a relapse episode.
The Probuphine implant eliminates much of this risk since it’s inserted underneath the skin. The implant is designed to deliver a steady dose of buprenorphine for up to six months.
While traditional opiate addiction treatments do offer effective solutions, the class of new medication therapies coming on the market provides even more support for opiate addicts and the challenges they face in recovery.