September 19, 2007
Personalized, Online Help for Prescription Painkiller and Heroin Dependence: Confidential Treatment in a Doctor’s Private Office
RICHMOND, Va., Sept. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc. announces an extensive new online resource that provides personalized support and information to individuals who are dependent on prescription opioid painkillers and heroin. By helping dependent people find a path to treatment in a confidential and private setting, this unique online resource supports the overall goals of September as National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month. While visiting TurntoHelp.com, people seeking help for their dependence and their families can register to receive information and support that is appropriate to their own personal needs.
Opioid dependence is a national health crisis that affects some six million Americans from all walks of life, socioeconomic levels, ages and genders. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) define opioid addiction as a long-term brain disease with a behavioral component. It is a treatable medical condition that is caused by changes in the chemistry of the brain. This dependence can start with use of medicine that a doctor prescribes for pain but that a person continues to use after the medical need for pain relief has passed. Or it may begin as recreational drug use that spins out of control.
TurntoHelp.com is an important resource for opioid-dependent individuals and their families, including:
-- Interactive, animated Website Guide to help visitors access the information they need -- Steps to recognizing opioid dependence and accurate information about the disease -- Personalized "Here to Help" private support program for patients, friends and family -- Local physician locator for those seeking office-based treatment -- Real-life patient testimonials about individuals' treatment with Suboxone(R). -- Informational resources and free Suboxone(R) Patient Resource Kits -- Additional outside resources
"TurntoHelp.com is a terrific resource that I encourage all my opioid- dependent patients to use," said Michael Schiesser, MD, of Creekside Center for Integrative Medicine in Bellevue, WA. "As a physician, I am responsible for ensuring that my patients receive the best possible care, and the customized information offered to them through this Web site can go a long way towards helping them remain in long-term recovery. The patient (and family) education offered by this resource is a valuable adjunct to the medical treatment I provide."
Among the information presented on TurntoHelp.com, Suboxone(R) (buprenorphine HCl/naloxone HCl dihydrate) C-III Sublingual Tablets is featured as a medical treatment. Buprenorphine is the only FDA-approved controlled medicine used to treat opioid dependence that can be prescribed by doctors in their offices and with take-home prescriptions, under special legislation.
"The flexible and customized assistance provided by TurntoHelp.com exemplifies our longstanding commitment to patients, and we are proud to introduce it during National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month," said Shaun Thaxter, president of Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc., marketers of Suboxone(R). "The site can now help people throughout the entire recovery process, from recognizing the untreated disease to establishing long-term recovery. Through 'Here to Help,' the Website guides users on entering a recovery plan and finding a doctor certified to treat with buprenorphine, as well as providing full and accurate information about the disease state, useful outside resources and much more. Additionally, because we recognize the significant role that family and friends play in substance abuse treatment and recovery, portions of TurnToHelp.com are specifically designed for them."
About Suboxone(R) Treatment for Opioid Dependence
After opioid-dependent patients are initially inducted onto Suboxone(R), the medicine may be prescribed in an office-based setting by certified doctors with take-home prescriptions. This treatment modality is attractive to many patients because of the privacy and convenience that office-based treatment offers. Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist, which allows it to be used to treat opioid dependence for two critical reasons: first, it acts on the brain to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms; and second, because it is a partial opioid agonist, it does not excite the same level of opioid-induced brain activity as full agonists do, and thus does not produce the maximal euphoric effect of a full agonist. Buprenorphine is sold under the brand names Suboxone(R) and Subutex(R) by Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Resources for Opioid Dependence and Its Treatment
Individuals who need more information about opioid dependence and its treatment, either for themselves or for someone they are concerned about, have several options.
Visit http://www.turntohelp.com/ for information about treatment for opioid dependence, including a drug dependence questionnaire, a physician locator and a personalized confidential support program via email.
Visit http://www.suboxone.com/ or call 1-866-455-TURN for a free educational Resource Kit on opioid dependence and the treatments that are available for it, both provided by Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
The Addiction411 page on MySpace offers direct access to information about this increasingly prevalent disease and practical guidance on how to find treatment for opioid dependence. Visit http://www.myspace.com/addiction411 if you or someone you know would like to access Addiction411.
NAABT, a non-profit patient advocacy group -- National Alliance of Advocates for Buprenorphine Treatment -- is dedicated to helping educate the public on opioid dependence and treatment in a private doctor's office. NAABT offers a confidential nationwide matching service to pair individuals seeking buprenorphine treatment with available area physicians; visit http://www.naabt.org/.
SAMHSA's Web site also provides a physician locator and other valuable information at buprenorphine.samhsa.gov.
About Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc. is a specialty pharmaceutical company that markets Suboxone(R) (buprenorphine HCl/naloxone HCl dihydrate [2 mg/0.5 mg and 8 mg/2 mg]) C-III Sublingual Tablets and Subutex(R) (buprenorphine HCl [2 mg and 8 mg]) C-III Sublingual Tablets, formulations of buprenorphine used to treat opioid dependence in a medical office-based setting. Suboxone and Subutex, manufactured by Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare Ltd., are the only controlled medications under the Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 approved by the FDA for office-based treatment of opioid dependence. Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc. is committed to expanding access to medical therapies for patients suffering from the chronic, relapsing brain disease of opioid dependence. For more information, visit suboxone.com
or opioiddependence.com. Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Reckitt Benckiser PLC, a publicly traded UK firm.
Important Safety Information
Suboxone(R) (buprenorphine/naloxone sublingual tablets) is indicated for the treatment of opioid dependence.
Buprenorphine, usually by the intravenous route, in combination with benzodiazepines or other CNS depressants has been associated with significant respiratory depression and death. Suboxone(R) has potential for abuse and produces dependence of the opioid type with a milder withdrawal syndrome than full agonists.
Cytolytic hepatitis and hepatitis with jaundice have been observed in the addicted population receiving buprenorphine.
There are no adequate and well controlled studies of Suboxone(R) (a Category C medication) in pregnancy.
Caution should be exercised when driving cars or operating machinery.
Always store buprenorphine containing medications safely and out of the reach of children and destroy any unused medication appropriately.
The most commonly reported adverse events with Suboxone(R) include headache (36%, placebo 22%), withdrawal syndrome (25%, placebo 37%), pain (22%, placebo 19%), nausea (15%, placebo 11%), insomnia (14%, placebo 16%), and sweating (14%, placebo 10%). Please see full prescribing information for a complete list.
Suboxone and Subutex are registered trademarks of Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare Ltd.
Media Contact: Lindsay Treadway 617-761-6738 [email protected]
Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc.
CONTACT: Lindsay Treadway, +1-617-761-6738,[email protected], for Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Web site: http://www.turntohelp.com/