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Naltrexone injections could reduce risk of relapse among opioid dependent individuals

Naltrexone injections could reduce risk of relapse among opioid dependent individuals

In a multicenter, randomized clinical trial, ex-prisoners who received six monthly injections of naltrexone--a long-acting medication that blocks opioid receptors in the brain--were significantly less likely to resume opioid use than those who received counseling and referrals to community treatment centers without naltrexone. [More]
Opioids could be dangerous, deadly at high doses

Opioids could be dangerous, deadly at high doses

Most people know that heroin is a dangerous drug, but its cousins, the legal, pharmaceutical opioids, such as codeine or hydrocodone, must be safe, right?Not so fast.Opioids—which include the illegal drug heroin as well as prescription medications, including hydrocodone (such as Vicodin), oxycodone (such as OxyContin and Percocet), morphine and codeine—can be dangerous, even deadly, at high doses. [More]
FDA announces required class-wide safety labeling changes for IR opioid pain medications

FDA announces required class-wide safety labeling changes for IR opioid pain medications

In a continuing effort to educate prescribers and patients about the potential risks related to opioid use, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration today announced required class-wide safety labeling changes for immediate-release (IR) opioid pain medications. Among the changes, the FDA is requiring a new boxed warning about the serious risks of misuse, abuse, addiction, overdose and death. [More]
Orexigen Therapeutics, Valeant Pharmaceuticals sign distribution agreement for Mysimba

Orexigen Therapeutics, Valeant Pharmaceuticals sign distribution agreement for Mysimba

Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. today announced Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. will commercialize Mysimba (naltrexone HCl / bupropion HCl prolonged release) in Central and Eastern Europe. [More]
New vaccine strategy may curb addiction, prevent fatal overdoses

New vaccine strategy may curb addiction, prevent fatal overdoses

With use of synthetic opioid "designer drugs" on the rise, scientists from The Scripps Research Institute have a new strategy to curb addiction and even prevent fatal overdoses. [More]
Buprenorphine superior to methadone in reducing duration of treatment for babies born in drug withdrawal

Buprenorphine superior to methadone in reducing duration of treatment for babies born in drug withdrawal

A study of two opioids used to wean babies born in withdrawal from drugs their mothers have taken shows that buprenorphine is superior to methadone in reducing duration of treatment and length of hospital stay. [More]
New data shows opioid overdose deaths hit record levels in 2014

New data shows opioid overdose deaths hit record levels in 2014

From 2000 to 2014 nearly half a million Americans died from drug overdoses. Opioid overdose deaths, including both opioid pain relievers and heroin, hit record levels in 2014, with an alarming 14 percent increase in just one year, according to new data published today in CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. [More]
Women need different treatment from men with addiction, says McMaster University-led study

Women need different treatment from men with addiction, says McMaster University-led study

Painkillers prescribed by doctors are the starting point for an opioid addiction for more than half of female methadone clinic patients, and they need different treatment from men with addiction, says a study led by McMaster University researchers. [More]
New computer-based modeling may help improve outcomes for babies with neonatal abstinence syndrome

New computer-based modeling may help improve outcomes for babies with neonatal abstinence syndrome

Computer-based modeling is helping to further reduce length of hospital stay and duration of treatment with opioids that are used therapeutically to wean babies born in withdrawal from drugs their mothers have taken. This condition is known as neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). [More]
BDSI announces FDA approval of BUNAVAIL sNDA for manufacturing specification change

BDSI announces FDA approval of BUNAVAIL sNDA for manufacturing specification change

BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc. announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the company's Supplemental New Drug Application (sNDA) for a manufacturing specification change for BUNAVAIL (buprenorphine and naloxone) buccal film (CIII). [More]
FDA accepts Braeburn's resubmission of Probuphine NDA for review

FDA accepts Braeburn's resubmission of Probuphine NDA for review

Braeburn Pharmaceuticals, an Apple Tree Partners company, today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has accepted Braeburn's resubmission of the Probuphine New Drug Application (NDA) for review and set February 27, 2016 as the target date for Agency action. [More]
New guideline on the use of prescription medications for treatment of opioid addiction

New guideline on the use of prescription medications for treatment of opioid addiction

Medications play an important role in managing patients with opioid use disorders, but there are not enough physicians with the knowledge and ability to use these often-complex treatments. [More]
Variations in opioid receptor genes linked to neonatal abstinence syndrome severity in newborn babies

Variations in opioid receptor genes linked to neonatal abstinence syndrome severity in newborn babies

A new study led by researchers at Boston Medical Center indicates that variations in opioid receptor genes are associated with more severe neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) in newborn babies. The findings, published online in Drug & Alcohol Dependence, could help lead to the development of individualized treatment plans tailored to each infants' risk of requiring medication to curb their NAS symptoms, which could help improve these patients' outcomes and reduce how long some stay in the hospital. [More]
BDSI announces FDA approval of sNDA for new formulation of ONSOLIS (fentanyl buccal soluble film) CII

BDSI announces FDA approval of sNDA for new formulation of ONSOLIS (fentanyl buccal soluble film) CII

BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc. announced the approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration of a Supplemental New Drug Application (sNDA) for a new formulation of ONSOLIS (fentanyl buccal soluble film) CII for the management of breakthrough pain in patients with cancer who are opioid tolerant. [More]
Research shows specific routes of administration can predict risk of drug addiction

Research shows specific routes of administration can predict risk of drug addiction

Abstinence is the best way to avoid drug addiction. But in many societies, drug use is the norm, not the exception, especially by youth. [More]

Opioid prescribing guidelines that focus high-dose use may need revision, say researchers

Overdoses of opioid pain medications frequently occur in people who aren't chronic users with high prescribed opioid doses--the groups targeted by current opioid prescribing guidelines, reports a study in the August issue of Medical Care. [More]
1 in 4 people with histories of nicotine use, substance abuse likely to use opioid painkillers long-term

1 in 4 people with histories of nicotine use, substance abuse likely to use opioid painkillers long-term

Opioid painkiller addiction and accidental overdoses have become far too common across the United States. To try to identify who is most at risk, Mayo Clinic researchers studied how many patients prescribed an opioid painkiller for the first time progressed to long-term prescriptions. The answer: 1 in 4. People with histories of tobacco use and substance abuse were likeliest to use opioid painkillers long-term. [More]
UC San Diego epidemiologist receives $1.5 million grant for research on HIV, substance abuse

UC San Diego epidemiologist receives $1.5 million grant for research on HIV, substance abuse

Dan Werb, PhD, an internationally noted epidemiologist at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, has been named one of four inaugural recipients of the Avenir Award, a prestigious $1.5 million research grant from the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). [More]
Implementation of needle exchange programs can prevent HIV outbreaks in Indiana

Implementation of needle exchange programs can prevent HIV outbreaks in Indiana

Congress needs to immediately lift the ban on federal funding for needle exchange programs to counter the threat of HIV outbreaks among injection drug users like the one that has seen an alarming number of new cases erupt in a single rural Indiana county. [More]
Veterans who died from drug overdoses also prescribed benzodiazepines for pain

Veterans who died from drug overdoses also prescribed benzodiazepines for pain

In a recent study, nearly half of all veterans who died from drug overdoses while prescribed opioids for pain were also receiving benzodiazepines, or benzos, which are common medications for the treatment of anxiety, insomnia and alcohol withdrawal. Veterans prescribed higher doses of benzodiazepines while concurrently receiving opioids were at greater risk of overdose death than those on lower doses of benzodiazepines. [More]
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