Depade is a brand name drug that contains naltrexone, a strong opioid antagonist. This medication is often used in treating opioid addiction and alcoholism.
The drug can have some serious side effects of its own, and therefore, must be taken exactly as prescribed. However, it is protected from any potential of abuse.
According to the National Library of Medicine, "Naltrexone is used along with counseling and social support to help people who have stopped drinking alcohol and using street drugs to continue to avoid drinking or using drugs." The drug itself is an opioid antagonist, which allows it to counteract the effects of opioids in the body. It has a similar effect on alcohol.
The drug can be very effective for the treatment of addiction, but in many cases, patients have a low tolerance rate for it, as it can cause many uncomfortable side effects (especially if one relapses). Some people do receive a great deal of support from Depade and other naltrexone-based medications, and depending on your situation, the drug could be helpful to you.
Signs and Symptoms of Depade Use
Though it is a treatment medication for addiction, Depade, like almost all other drugs, causes a number of side effects. These can range from uncomfortable to dangerous. The normal symptoms associated with Depade use include:
- Stomach Pain or Cramps
- Loss of Appetite
- Difficulty Falling Asleep
- Difficulty Staying Asleep
- Increased or Decreased Energy
- Muscle or Joint Pain
Normally, these side effects aren't very problematic. However, a person can experience more severe effects if they begin drinking or taking drugs while on the medication. It is very important that the individual is no longer dependent on any of these substances when they begin taking Depade.
Risks of Depade Use
The drug, while very safe compared to many others, does have certain risks. If one does relapse while on Depade, they are likely to experience sudden withdrawal effects, as the medication breaks the connection between a substance of abuse and the opioid receptors in the brain. This is one reason why it is very important to avoid relapse while on this particular medication and why one who is taking Depade must no longer be dependent on alcohol or opioids.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, "Liver problems are rare but can occur" while taking naltrexone. If you have suffered from liver issues in the past or recently, you may need to choose a different type of medication for your treatment.
As stated by SAMHSA, "There is no abuse and diversion potential with naltrexone." The drug is perfectly safe from this effect, which is one reason why many people turn to it for their addiction treatment. However, there are some issues associated with opioid and alcohol abuse that can occur while one is being treated with this medication.
Someone taking Depade should understand the dangerous of relapse while on this medication. If you abuse opioids or drink while taking the drug, you will not experience the effects of these substances, as the naltrexone will block them. However, some people continue to take these substances in larger and larger doses, leading to overdose. This is extremely dangerous.
Depade Addiction and Treatment
Unfortunately, the use of naltrexone in the treatment of addiction has been limited "due to poor adherence and tolerability by patients" (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
However, Depade and other drugs containing naltrexone are being used more frequently and successfully now in order to treat these issues. It is important to note, though, that the medication alone isn't likely the best treatment for opioid or alcohol addiction, and a well-rounded treatment program that also offers behavioral therapy, interaction with healthcare professionals, and aftercare is often the best solution.
Depade is not a dangerous drug, and especially those who take it faithfully will experience beneficial effects and be very unlikely to relapse. Because this can be difficult, though, and because the medication can have certain side effects just like any other drug, it is important to stay in close contact with your doctor while you are on Depade.