The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is cautioning prescribers about withholding opioid addiction treatment medications from patients who are taking central nervous system (CNS) depressants.
In a statement, the agency has warned the public that medications such as methadone and buprenorphine should not be kept from the individuals taking benzodiazepines and similar drugs that depress the CNS for risk of complications.
The FDA believes that the combined use of these substances escalates the risk of their harmful side effects.Yet, the federal agency also stated that problems linked to an untreated opioid use disorder can surpass that risk.
Careful management of medication, the FDA stated, should be done by medical professionals in order to reduce the risks of side effects.
In addition, the FDA is now requiring that this new information is added to methadone and buprenorphine labels with recommendations for patients to decrease the use of medication-assisted treatment drugs and benzodiazepines.
Both methadone and buprenorphine act on the areas of the brain receptive to opioids and help reduce or put an end addiction, according to the FDA.
These drugs have also been found to be effective in reducing adverse health effects and deaths associated with dependency.
The medications, the FDA stated, are often used in tandem with treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy, and patients can include the substances in their treatments indefinitely.
The patients generally don’t feel the… (continue reading)