Medication Naltrexone, in Tablet form, exists on the market for decades and has been used for treatment of both alcohol and opiate dependency. Naltrexone and Naltrexone Implants are opioid receptor antagonists that binds to the opioid receptors in the brain, and by blocking them, prevents their activation by alcohol or drugs, avoiding release of the cascade of transmitters that lead to euphoria or “high”. Proper use of this drug proved to be effective in reducing the frequency and severity of relapse.
Newly developed Naltrexone Implants help bypass common challenges with oral treatments such poor compliance and has lesser gastrointestinal side effects.
Naltrexone pellets are placed via insertion under the skin of the lower abdominal area. Minor procedure has virtually no downtime, neither is associated with any severe complications. Medication is manufactured to be biodegradable and to cause no physical discomfort. Done under local anesthesia, the procedure will take about a half hour to be completed, so you could return straight back to work the same day.
The effect takes place within hours and lasts up to 4-6 months and beyond. Some clients may require a second or third procedure, in that case patients are offered a discounted rate.
Because medication by itself is not sufficient to eliminate cravings or psychological part that often drives dependency, we at Right Path, combine this medication treatment with a comprehensive Recovery Program. The latter is aimed at addressing the mental part of addiction and provides ongoing support for up to 18 months.
With the above approach, Naltrexone Implants appear to be a very effective and safe treatment tool for a selected subset of patients suffering from alcohol abuse or opiate dependency.
Buprenorphine Implant (PROBUPHINE)
This is our newest and FDA approved treatment, perfect for selected opiate dependent individuals.
No more diversion of Suboxone or other Buprenorphine products, no need to stick to daily dosing regimens and no more worries about compliance for providers.
The implant is a small, solid rod. It is placed under the skin, usually in the upper arm, by a doctor in a simple office procedure.
Buprenorphine is a partial opiate agonist and binds to mu opiate receptor with much stronger affinity than heroin or drugs. It acts like a mismatched key that fits the lock but would not open the door. Hence, there is no activation of a neurotransmitter cascade leading to “high” or euphoria. And as partial agonist, it eliminates cravings, allowing you to focus on recovery, thus making it the best choice for opiate addiction, when coupled with psychotherapy.
With Probuphine, you will get 6 months of continuous buprenorphine dosing from a single implant. This makes it a perfect option for clients who have long out of town work assignments, prolonged travel, or facing incarceration.
VIVITROL® (naltrexone for extended-release injectable suspension)
Essentially acting exactly the same as described above Naltrexone Implant, this is a treatment modality that has been largely utilized in prevention of relapse after opiate detoxification and to maintain abstinence, as well as for treatment of alcohol abuse.
Very effective and applicable for selective patients, this is the most affordable among extended treatments offered here.
To achieve long term sobriety Vivitrol must be combined with addiction counseling.
Injections are administered monthly into the muscle tissue and have minimal to no harm compared to a surgical procedure. Nevertheless, typical for any injection, local side effects were occasionally reported and may require urgent medical attention or even surgery (in rare cases).
Infrequent systemic side effects such as serious allergic reactions including allergic pneumonitis and depressed mood have occurred.
Common side effects like nausea, tiredness, headache, dizziness, vomiting, decreased appetite, painful joints, and muscle cramps are usually transient; in addition, common side effects in people taking VIVITROL for opioid dependence also include cold symptoms, trouble sleeping, and toothaches are manageable and rarely lead to discontinuation of the therapy.
You will need to be detoxified from opiates before initiation of Vivitrol.
Currently not universally covered by insurance carriers.
If you feel one of the above treatment options meets your needs, give us a call for a consultation with one of our certified providers.