Methadone and Hydrocodone are long-acting, synthetic drug that was first used in the maintenance treatment of drug addiction in the United States in the 1960s. It is an opioid “agonist,” which means that it acts in a way that is similar to morphine and other narcotic medications. When used in proper doses in maintenance treatment, methadone does not create euphoria, sedation, or an analgesic effect. Doses must be individually determined. The proper maintenance dose is the one at which the cravings stop, without creating the effects of euphoria or sedation. Although methadone is not a single product from a single manufacturer, the active ingredient is always the same: methadone hydrochloride.
All manufacturers add inactive ingredients, such as fillers, preservatives and flavorings. Methadone is dispensed orally in different forms, which include:
- Tablets, also called diskettes. Each one contains 40 milligrams of methadone, is dissolved in water, and then is administered in an oral dose.
- Powder is also dissolved in water.
- Liquid methadone can be dispensed with an automated measuring pump. Dosages can be adjusted to as small as a single milligram.
It works a lot like morphine does. You can take it as a tablet, a powder, or a liquid. It must be prescribed by a doctor. People who take it illegally often inject it, which exposes them to diseases.
Even though it’s safer than some other narcotics, your doctor should keep a close watch on you while you take methadone. Taking it can lead to addiction or abuse.
What Does It Do?
Methadone changes the way your brain and nervous system respond to pain so that you feel relief. Its effects are slower than those of other strong painkillers like morphine. It blocks the high you get from drugs like codeine, heroin, hydrocodone, morphine, and oxycodone.
Your doctor may prescribe methadone if you’re in a lot of pain from an injury, surgery, or chronic illness.
It can also help if you’re in treatment for addiction to other opioids. It can give a similar feeling and prevent withdrawal symptoms. You may hear this called replacement therapy. Methadone replaces the opioids in your system with milder effects.
DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION
Methadone Hydrochloride Powder MUST BE DISSOLVED IN AN APPROPRIATE LIQUID VEHICLE BEFORE ORAL ADMINISTRATION.
While there’s no set amount of time you’ll take methadone to treat an addiction, experts say it should be at least a year, and maybe more than that. The doctor will carefully track your body’s response to it and adjust your treatment. When it’s time to stop taking it, he’ll help you stop slowly to prevent withdrawal.
With short-term use, you may notice:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Slow breathing
- Itchy skin
- Heavy sweating
- Sexual problems
Methadone Hydrochloride Powder is contraindicated in patients with:
- Significant respiratory depression
- Acute or severe bronchial asthma in an unmonitored setting or in the absence of resuscitative equipment
- Known or suspected gastrointestinal obstruction, including paralytic ileus
- Hypersensitivity (e.g. anaphylaxis) to methadone or any other ingredient in Methadone Hydrochloride Powder