BEVERLY HILLS, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–April 25, 2005–In response to a growing number of reports touting Buprenorphine as an effective treatment for dependency to prescription painkillers and illegal drugs such as heroin, The Waismann Method, a world-renowned opiate dependency treatment, today declared that patients who are prescribed Buprenorphine are being misinformed to believe that this drug is a miracle cure for opiate dependency. According to Dr. Clifford Bernstein, medical director of the Waismann Method, “Buprenorphine is a new generation replacement therapy that may not ultimately rid users of chemical dependency.” As one of only a handful of the nation’s doctors who are trained and board certified by the American Society of Addiction Specialists to dispense Buprenorphine as a treatment for opiate dependency, Dr. Bernstein has seen the number of calls received from patients physically dependent on Buprenorphine increase about 150 percent since the beginning of 2005. The official statement continues:
“Buprenorphine is being touted as a miracle cure to end heroin addiction, reduce crime and prevent disease, and patients are flocking to this new medication based on an illusionary hope that it will cure them of their opiate dependencies. While it does take the place of illegal opiates and also enables repeat users of illicit drugs and prescription painkillers to avoid the shame and social stigma of public methadone clinics, Buprenorphine is far from a cure. It can help patients get to the next step of recovery, but it is unfair to represent this drug as a cure when it is essentially a replacement opiate.
“Doctors are required to become certified to dispense Buprenorphine for opiate dependency treatment but are not mandated to educate their patients on the potential for dependency. As a result, patients don’t realize they can become addicted to Buprenorphine for life, and that this new medication only legally and comfortably perpetuates their vicious cycle of dependency. With proper education, patients will understand the risks and may avoid the difficulties we discovered with OxyContin.
“The goal for people suffering from drug dependency should be freeing them from the physical dependency of opiates completely, but unfortunately the addiction community has embraced this strategy of maintenance therapy rather than putting an end to the dependency. Health professionals and administrators are pressuring the federal government to expand access to this drug when they should really focus on educating these individuals about their medical dependencies and helping them become drug-free.”
Buprenorphine, currently sold under the brand names Suboxone and Subutex, is a painkiller composed of 50 percent opiate, which has been used to treat dependency in Europe for years and is now positioned in the U.S. as a lifesaving treatment for addictions to heroin and prescription painkillers like OxyContin and Vicodin. Only board-certified doctors and medical practitioners who undergo an eight-hour training class are permitted to prescribe the drug for opiate dependency but are limited by the federal government to treat only a total 30 patients at a time.
Many people with opiate dependencies are eager to try the treatment as an improvement over methadone, an opiate-based painkiller often prescribed at clinics through a daily dose. Because Buprenorphine can be prescribed in pill form in the privacy of a doctor’s office, patients don’t feel the same stigma attached to standing in line at a methadone clinic, says Bernstein.
For more information, please call (310) 205-0808 or (888) 987-HOPE or send us a confidential email.About the Waismann Method
Drs. Clifford A. Bernstein and Michael Lowenstein use the exclusive Waismann Method of rapid detox to treat opiate dependency. Performed in a hospital intensive care unit, the Waismann Method involves cleansing the opiate receptors in the patient’s brain of the narcotics while the patient is under anesthesia. During the procedure, the patient will experience no conscious withdrawal and will be able to return home within days. The Waismann Method, founded by Clare Waismann, is headquartered in California.