Comments for: Once-a-month opiate addiction treatment little-used in Maine, clinic operators say

Posted Dec. 27, 2012, at 7:19 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine —The newest FDA-approved treatment for opiate addiction — a once-a-month shot that blocks opioid receptors in the brain — has been on the market for more than two years but is seeing little use in Maine, where drug addiction is on the rise. “Vivitrol is nothing new. It’s …

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  • Jim Smith

    What is the purpose of this article?

  • Anonymous

    what is the cost for 1 month of methadone treatment for an addict? not in just cash price for the dose? see, this drug would eliminate a whole sector of the legal narco industrial complex. you can’t abuse it or get high from it

    • Anonymous

      Tanner – If you really care about this issue, you would also take some time to understand which pharmaceutical company is selling this snake oil in the wake of Maine’s short-sighted decision to cut opiate addicts from the methadone program after 2 years. Is there anyone with some expertise or education involved in these policy decisions, or just a bunch of panicked freak-out types?

      • Anonymous

        I think he was comparing methadone to Vivitrol, not lack of treatment…

      • Anonymous

        I’m not sure how, exactly, it’s short sighted to want to get addicts off of drugs, especially when we’re paying. If they can’t get off of drugs in two years, then they don’t want to be off them and they belong in the criminal justice system or the cemetery anyway.

        I’m all for helping people, but you cannot enable them for years and years and years. That does no one any favors.

        • Anonymous

          You don’t know much about opiate addiction.

          • Anonymous

            I paid attention to the DARE program when I was a kid. Never had any drug issues.

          • Anonymous

            most that are on here that comment dont ever know much about it

        • Anonymous

          I believe that it takes approx 5 years to be able to completely come off methodone while suboxone is less. I am unsure of your age but I am thinking that some things have changed since you were in DARE they now know a little more about addiction then awhile ago. But I do believe that you can not help a person who doesnt want to be helped it just wont work you can give them all the methodone suboxone or whatever you want if they arent ready then it wont work. Just they wont get high if they are on suboxone and that is why more tend to use methodone as you do get a high from it and can still regularly use with no issues.

  • Anonymous

    $860 for a month of methadone treatments, daily,,,,,1500. for once a month treatment with no “high”. Yeh, the cost is more, but over the long haul might be better worth it. As long as it did away with methadone all together.

    • Anonymous

      and it may also save some lives; the overdosed and the victims of the druggies

      • Anonymous

        The addicts themselves don’t care about their lives.
        How can anyone help them, if they won’t help themselves?

    • Anonymous

      In seven years or less the patent on Vivitrol will expire. At that time if there is enough demand, the generic version will sell for one sixth to one tenth of $1500 for once per month treatment. Then it will be cost effective.

    • Anonymous

      People get paid to drive to the methodone clinics, they are reinbursed by DHS for travel expenses, so that pushes up the $860 to add a daily travel expense. maybe $1500 is on par with the cost.

  • Anonymous

    What is the name of the pharmaceutical company that has decided to market Vivitrol to the State of Maine? I wish the BDN was capable of deeper reporting. This is entry level news.

  • Anonymous

    Of course the discovery house folks are being cautious. if people get off narcotics, how can they push their own drug agenda. if people got off drugs, they’d be out of business. duh!

    • Anonymous

      Maybe you haven’t noticed… Lots of folks are addicted to opioids. It’s unlikely there will be a shortage any time soon.

  • Anonymous

    Be a lot cheaper to buy a set of cuffs and chain them to a wall for a few days.

    • happyguy123

      What ever happened to 30 days in jail, no tv, no reading, one shower per week, one peanut butter sandwich and a glass of water at meal time? Guess what? No cure-all drugs needed. End of story.

      • Anonymous

        Opioid addiction causes permanent changes to brain chemistry. Part of the clinical criteria to be an “addict” is that you continue to make bad choices to feed your habit, in spite of the known risks.

        For example, they’ll use dirty needles – fully knowing that they may be putting themselves at risk – because they need their fix.

        You can’t punish this out of someone. They may need long term opioid-replacement therapy and certainly need extensive psychosocial treatment.

        • Anonymous

          There are to many of them, created by doctors and hospitals getting kick backs for prescribing pain killers

          • Anonymous

            What are the kickbacks they get?

        • Anonymous

          What you call “permanent changes” can be reversed.
          People making excuses for addiction just enable the next generation to try these drugs because the stigma of addiction is eliminated.

      • Guest

        Addicts have a physical problem jail is not equipped to deal with.
        You folks and your remedies are way off base.

  • Anonymous

    Methodone is like giving an alcholic beer for their addiction.

  • Vivitrol is naltrexone in a new extended release delivery mode. Naltrexone is a real threat to the for-profit methadone clinics like Discovery House, which is why they are so resistant to it. Naltrexone is an antagonist–blocks the opiate receptors in the brain and therefore does not produce any high–whereas methadone mimics opiates. Can you see why the addicts prefer methadone?

    The argument for methadone is this: The taxpayers had better pay for my methadone or I will go out and commit crimes. Why should the taxpayers stand for that kind of logic?

  • Anonymous

    VIVITROL/NALTREXONE
    No it isn’t anything new, and if it could be made affordable there is a huge potential for it in Washington county. in two ways.
    First as a stepdown from the current 2 years cap on methadone treatment.
    Secondly for those that have been able to complete an inpatient detoxification; with induction started either prior to discharge, or immediately afterwards at a doctor’s office.
    This would be Good news for addicts seeking treatment.
    And Good news for the clinics as this would allow them to continue decreasing staff as the need for the amount of counselors they currently employee/did employ continues to decline.
    This is bad news financially for the few substance abuse counselors still currently employed at the clincis.
    As I no longer “have a dog in the fight”…………I’ll be curious to see if Naltrexone as Vivitrol WILL be allowed to catch on here in Washington county.

  • Anonymous

    What I would worry about is since opiates are related to muscle growth and released during strength training, how does something like Vivitrol affect the body, muscle growth and anything that uses the bodies stength?

    Anti psychotic medication affects serotonin and dopamine levels and dopamine is essential for noradrenaline and adrenaline production to bind with alpha and beta receptors to regulate heart rate, bronchial dialation, and pressure, as well as be a neurotransmitter to allow communication in the brain. If the neurotransmitter is cut off from things like too much Valium, it leads to a coma, and they wonder why there are cases of unexplained deaths using ani psychotic and anti anxiety medications?!?!?!?!

    Has anyone thought of strength training to replace opiate addiction?!?!?! I think I’d stick to that…..

    Yeah, psychiatrists will use the example, if someone has diabetes don’t you think they need insulin? If it’s type one, yes, but at least I can get a blood sugar reading to see if diabetes is an issue. What psychiatrist takes a chemical count of one’s dopamine in the brain?!?! Sure they aren’t too quick to judge? Also, why do they want to drug someone in a mental hospital to show they will not do something again!?!? Since when do people who go to court for a misdemeanor have someone tell them they should take a drug to make sure they won’t be a repeat offender, or someone who commits a felony and is released??? Lastly, why are committed people treated like and compared to felons when it comes to rights, when they never committed a felony or hurt anyone??? Why isn’t there court to prove one is mentally ill enough to be treated as such, before they are treated as such?

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