NIH-Supported Trial Addresses Barrier to OUD Treatment

May 17, 2024 // Southern Medical Association

Recently published results from a clinical trial supported by the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), indicate that "Starting people with opioid use disorder on extended-release, injectable naltrexone (XR-naltrexone) within five to seven days of seeking treatment is more effective than the standard treatment method of starting within 10-15 days".

XR-naltrexone is one of three Food and Drug Administration-approved medications for the treatment of OUD and binds to and blocks opioid receptors in the brain, thereby lessening opioid cravings as well as preventing the effects of opioids.

In a news release published by the NIH, NIDA director Dr. Nora Volkow shared the importance of the study. “When someone is ready to seek treatment for opioid use disorder, it is crucial that they receive it as quickly as possible,” she said. “This study paves the way for more timely care with one of the three medications for opioid use disorder we have available, better supporting people in their ability to choose the treatment option that will work best for them.”

Click here to read the entire release which contains additional information regarding the study.

According to the NIH, more than 107,000 people died of a drug overdose in 2022, with 75% of those deaths involving an opioid. 


Posted in: 2024
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