Oxymorphone Drug Information

prescription pills

Oxymorphone is an opiate-type pain reliever that has been around since 1959 in injectable and suppository forms. In 2006, the Food and Drug Administration approved new pill forms of this drug. The new drug was brand-named Opana (for instant release formulation) and Opana ER (an extended-release formula).

This new opiate pill was considered to have fewer side effects and to create less euphoria than other commonly-abused opiates. Thus it was thought that this new pill would less prone to abuse than drugs like OxyContin, Lortab or Vicodin. However, since the 2006 reformulation, Opana has grown popular among opiate addicts.

One possible reason for this popularity could be that opiate addicts very often don’t receive any euphoric effects from the pills they abuse if they have been abusing opiates for a long time. As the body builds up a tolerance to opiates, they need more of the drug just to keep themselves from getting sick and so they can feel functional. They might get a high from some particularly potent or fast-acting formulation they are not used to but by and large, they are just preventing dopesickness when they find and abuse more opiates.

Here’s another reason that Opana may be a popular drug to abuse. When some drugs are broken down by the liver, their component parts may be identical to other drugs. For example, the muscle relaxant Soma breaks down into the tranquilizer Miltown (meprobamate). In a similar fashion, Opana or oxymorphone breaks down into oxycodone, trade-named OxyContin. When Oxycontin pills were reformulated to make them harder to abuse, the popularity of Opana for abuse began to increase.

Obtaining Painkillers to Abuse

oxymorphone prescriptino

It is tragic that so many people begin abusing painkillers after being prescribed these pills for legitimate pain. Once a tolerance builds, their pain is no longer alleviated and they are likely to visit the doctor to ask for a higher dosage. The doctor may increase the dosage once or twice but then some doctors become concerned with abuse, addiction or malpractice and may cut a person off. At that point, the patient is on his (or her) own to get drugs illicitly.

There are several ways that people can obtain opiates like Opana to abuse. They can steal small quantities from medicine chests or the purses or bedside drawers of friends. Many people go doctor-shopping, which means having three or four doctors that are visited for the purpose of obtaining prescriptions. It is harder to successfully obtain drugs this way than it used to be, as state after state passes laws mandating prescription monitoring programs. This means that a person can’t go to three or four pharmacies to obtain medication without the staff being alerted. These staff will then refuse to dispense the pills and will notify law enforcement.

Some drug dealers traffic in prescription medications along with supplies of heroin and cocaine. Some of these drugs are easier to obtain in Mexico, so prescription pills of various types may be smuggled across the border along with illicit drugs.

It is very common for addicts and those who wish to make money dealing drugs to make repeated trips to states where doctors are more liberal about prescribing popular drugs. Florida had a reputation for being a good place to obtain these drugs until 2010 when the laws changed. With Florida shut down, the Houston and Cincinnati areas became hotbeds of illicit prescribing. In November 2012, police shut down three pain management clinics in Covington, Kentucky, right across the border from Cincinnati, taking some of these drugs off the street.

There has also been an increase in the number of pharmacy thefts. Very often, thieves are walking into a pharmacy and demanding Opana pills.

The Road Out of Addiction to Opana

Understandably, leaving Opana or oxymorphone addiction behind is a difficult task. But at Narconon drug rehab centers, sobriety can be accomplished without the use of any additional drugs. It is possible to go through a tolerable and drug-free withdrawal from oxymorphone. Narconon centers support each addicted person with generous nutritional supplementation and plenty of one-on-one work with the staff. Special physical assists help calm the body’s reaction to the withdrawal of opiates. Carefully regulated nutritional support helps alleviate many of the worst symptoms of withdrawal. This system of help can make the Narconon approach to sobriety the most positive one yet.

But it is after this that sobriety is really built anew from the ruins of one’s addicted life. In most cases, an addicted person has lost everything of value - friends, family, work, wealth and self-respect. One new life skill at a time, the Narconon program helps a person rebuild the ability to make drug-free decisions and regain personal integrity.

Find out how this unique and innovative drug rehab program can help someone you care about.


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