Published online: June 03, 2016
Research shows that up to 71 percent of people who are prescribed opioids fail to properly discard the drugs after discontinuing use, increasing the risk that the medications will be abused by others.
Opioid misuse is at epidemic proportions in the United States, with deaths due to opioid overdose quadrupling since 1999. At APA’s 2016 Annual Meeting last month, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) sponsored a session on therapeutic developments that may one day help to reverse this public health crisis.
According to Thomas Jenkins, Ph.D., executive vice president and chief scientific officer at Elysium Pharmaceuticals, up to 71 percent of people who are prescribed opioids fail to properly discard the drugs after discontinuing use, increasing the risk that they will be used by other household members.
In an effort to reduce diversion, Elysium developed XpiRx (pronounced expire), a pill that consists of the opioid receptor agonist hydrocodone and the opioid antagonist naltrexone. According to Jenkins, human studies have found that combined opioid agonist and opioid antagonist therapies are less likely to be abused than opioid agonists alone; however, this particular investigational therapy goes a step further in deterring abuse.
Read more online at Psychiatric News