Using drugs to treat opioid addiction - FOX 5 KRBK is Springfield MO source for News and Weather

Using drugs to treat opioid addiction

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SPRINGFIELD, MO (03/09/18) - Hospitals are prescribing Suboxone which is the most common drug that eases withdrawal symptoms by delivering diminished doses of opioids.  And Cox Hospital says it’s a necessary part of recovery for almost anyone that has an opioid addiction.

In 2016, the Kansas City star reported that Missouri had the nation’s worst ratio of certified provider to opioid overdose deaths. And with Suboxone, this long term medication is making a dent in saving lives.

“We really treat this more of the management of a chronic condition," says Centers for Addictions director Tress Moyle. "We look at it like treating any other chronic condition like diabetes, cancer, and autoimmune disorders.”

 Moyle says the drug is a combination of two medications: Buprenorphine and Naloxone which assists with cravings and withdrawals.

In 2015, the Centers for Disease Control grouped Missouri counties based on opioid prescriptions. The darker color shows the highest regions with Greene County being among the highest.  And jumping to 2017, the CDC says the Midwest region saw a 70 percent increase of opioid overdoses.

“It’s probably one of the most difficult things that we treat because the withdrawal is so intense," explains Moyle. "We, currently, are treating right around 230 patients.”

The medication is possible to be used for the rest of a patients life.  Moyle says Cox’s Centers for Addiction began using the medication in 2005. "We have medication that can aid in recovery why wouldn’t we use them.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with an opioid addiction there is help. Addiction experts say don’t be afraid to seek recovery. To reach the Cox North's Centers for Addiction you can call them at 417-269-2273.

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