History of Methadone Maintenance Program for Heroin Addictions

Use of heroin after World War II reached epidemic proportions between the 50s and 60s in New York City. The number of deaths from heroin over doses went alarmingly up, and 75% of the deaths were between 15 to 35 year olds. Heroin was the leading cause of death amongst that age group in NY City. Something needed to be done to stop this epidemic.
0021 History of Methadone Maintenance Program for Heroin Addictions

Pre-war, in Germany Methadone was being used and an analgesia. It killed pain from 24 to 36 hours without the recipient losing consciousness. In 1949 two Doctors working at US Public Health Hospital in Lexington, Kentucky discovered and proved methadone to be effective for use with withdrawing addicts of heroin. What was supposed to happen was that over a 10 day period decreasing doses of methadone was to be prescribed to these addicts. It was found that relapses of 90% occurred after the patients left rehab.

In 1958,the Joint Committee of American Bar Association and American Medical Association issued a report recommending outpatient facilities be established to prescribe narcotics to addicts on an experimental basis. Several other groups made the same recommendations, and clinics dispensing the narcotics were established that were affiliated with hospitals.

The Rockefeller University in 64 began methadone maintenance research. A Dr. Dole did research and pioneered the development of methadone maintenance treatment for heroin addictions. He was later given an award for his work.

Initially morphine was looked at however it wasn’t ideal as it wore off during the day requiring injection several times a day. Methadone was then looked at, as it was considered safe and effective medication to get the folks off heroin. The researchers found that by keeping people on the methadone, as the people their tolerance was built up and their cravings for drugs were relieved.

neverending addiction 196x300 History of Methadone Maintenance Program for Heroin AddictionsThis then was the accepted treatment. One of the statistics I looked at on this report is that the death rate of patients in the treatment was a little higher than the regular death rate of NYC population, between 1969 and 1970, 7.6 deaths per thousand verses 5.6 deaths per 1000. But those who left treatment the stat jumped to 28.2 deaths per 1000. The stats of this treatment was only 8% of the discharged patients were doing well and had not relapsed to using heroin, 64% relapsed to the use of heroin and were re addicted. The rest had various addictions and problems.

The end result of this study was that methadone is a corrective, not curative treatment of heroin addiction. Patients would have to remain on this drug for indefinite periods of time, possibly the rest of their lives.  It was suggested that this treatment greatly reduces addiction-related crimes, reduces mortality and infectious diseases related to addiction.

Remember methadone is addictive and is toxic. People die from this drug. If you are addicted to methadone, or heroin, give Narconon a call.  1-800-914-3412

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Article by Dianne Gariepy

Dianne Gariepy is a mother of a large family, now grown, and grandmother of 9, soon to be 11 grandchildren. Dianne is very concerned about our food today. She would like to see GMOs stomped out completely and recommends organic food to everyone. The body needs food to eat and use as energy to repair itself, not something that is "roundup ready". She has much interest in drug rehabilitation that is done in a chemical free way, with natural supplements. Dianne is an award winning oil painter and has a following for her creations. She also is writing a book of short stories, is currently on story four of six. Her stories border upon fantasy and science fiction, although science was never her strong suit. She is known in the Edmonton area for her sense of humor, and is known to do the odd comedy routine at Church functions and group gatherings.
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