In a bid to address the worsening problem of prescription drug opioid abuse, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a new medication that emits an anti-addiction implant.
The approval came amid the recent pronouncement of U.S. President Barack Obama’s strong stance against illicit drugs and the growing concern over prescription drug abuse such as opioid, CNN reported.
The implant releases a medication called buprenorphine, which blocks the person’s drive to long for opioid and prevents the common symptoms the person experiences once he stops taking opioid. Although buprenorphine has already been available in pill form in the past, it’s the first time the same anti-addiction medication became available as an implant.
Robert M. Califf, a commissioner of the FDA, said that the implant could make a lot of difference in the country’s battle against opioid abuse and addiction that has taken the toll on American families. The device, which FDA calls Probuphine, can be implanted in the arm. It will be the first of its kind to be made available across the world.
“Opioid abuse and addiction have taken a devastating toll on American families. We must do everything we can to make new, innovative treatment options available that can help patients regain control over their lives,” Califf was quoted as saying by CNN.
It can be recalled in a previous report by Morning News USA that the CDC noted a significant increase in the number of prescriptions of opioid for patients with chronic pain. In fact, data from the center reveals that prescriptions issued as well as sales for opioid have increased by more than 400 percent since 1999.
In the U.S., at least 1,200 individuals have died due to opioid-related overdose. With this, the CDC recently urged physicians via recently issued guidelines to avoid prescribing opioid as a painkiller as much as possible due to its addictive effects.