Accelerated Opiate Detox FAQs

Accelerated Opiate Detox (AOD) FAQs

  1. What has been your success rate?
  2. What is Narcotic dependence?
  3. What are the different ways to detoxify from narcotics?
  4. How Does the Accelerated Opiate Detox Program work and what should be expected?
  5. What is Naltrexone therapy, and why is it important for opiate addiction?
  6. How long should I be on Naltrexone Therapy?
  7. Is AOD effective for detoxing from methadone, Suboxone (buprenorphine) and Subutex?
  8. Are there any risks and side effects?
  9. How do patients feel during the detox?
  10. What happens after the detoxification?
  11. What is the risk of overdosing after completing treatment?
  12. What is the follow up with your facility?
  13. What does Accelerated Opiate Detox cost?

1. What has been your success rate?

We have been performing the Accelerated Opiate Detox since 2001. To date, we have successfully detoxed over 98% of patients.

 

2. What is Narcotic dependence?

Narcotic dependence is a medical condition where a person has been taking a narcotic (Opiates, Heroin, Methadone, Suboxone or other painkillers) and their body becomes physically dependent on the substance. Drug dependence often happens very quickly: Heroin can be addictive after only one use, and other narcotics can take as little a week or two for a user to become dependent. After someone develops a narcotic tolerance, they’ll experience very painful withdrawal symptoms if they don’t use it. Without medical assistance, withdrawal typically takes about 10 days and includes extreme discomfort and pain, diarrhea, sweats, sleeplessness and abdominal cramps. Most people are unable to tolerate the symptoms without professional help.

 

3. What are the different ways to detoxify from narcotics?

There are a number of ways to detoxify from narcotics.

  • Accelerated Opioid Detox: This outpatient approach uses sedative medicines and Naltrexone to help patients safely and comfortably detox in as few as three days. At our clinics, 98% of patients successfully complete their detox, without the risks and costs of general anesthesia, or the need to take an extended break from their daily responsibilities.
  • Self Detox: Stopping suddenly is known as “going cold turkey,” and this can be extremely uncomfortable and dangerous. Most people try tapering or weaning down themselves, but this is almost never successful. This approach is usually so uncomfortable that most patients are unable to tolerate the pain and resort to using opiates again. Self-detox from long-acting medication such as Methadone or Buprenorphine can be even more drawn out and uncomfortable. Self-detox is not generally recommended due to the high probability of relapse and potential safety concerns.
  • Ultra Rapid Opioid Detoxification (URD or UROD): This inpatient, hospital-based method involves putting patients under General Anesthesia and intravenously administering opioid antagonists such as Naltrexone. This process of flushing the drugs out of their system can take place in as few as five minutes. UROD comes with a high cost and serious medical risks — and there have been fatalities reported.
  • Inpatient Detoxification: Inpatient detox can take place in a hospital or rehab facility for several days to upwards of 30 days in order to fully rid the body from opiates. Medical professionals supervise and administer the medications for pain and discomfort during the detox, as well as monitor the patient for safety. This method can be very expensive and often interrupts daily responsibilities. With inpatient detox, it is important to be aware that health insurance may not cover the full length of stay it requires to fully detox. The number of days required will vary with each patient.
  • Methadone or Buprenorphine: This common approach uses opiates to help people detox from another opiate. A clinic guides patients through a weeks-long taper period, where the individual begins using Methadone or Buprenorphine in place of another, more dangerous opiate. Unfortunately, while they are completely legal, both of these medications are also highly addictive opiates — so many people end up trading one addiction for another. That said, they are both valuable, evidence-based medications used for ongoing Medication-Assisted Treatment for opioid use disorder; they just can be hard to detox off of, for those patients who are trying to do so.

 

4. How Does the Accelerated Opiate Detox Program work and what should be expected?

Before the Detox Begins:

  • Decide on dates you would like to come in for treatment. We do not have a waiting list and can typically begin your treatment within a week of scheduling.
  • Once availability has been confirmed, a non-refundable deposit is collected to secure your treatment dates.
  • Before arriving, you will be given instructions on how to complete our online medical screening form. A practitioner will call you directly to review your medical history.
  • Patients stop taking their opioids 16-48 hours before their first scheduled appointment, based on guidance from our physician.
  • We require each patient to have a support person who stays with them throughout the detox duration and 48 hours after their detox. Patients are not allowed to drive and must be monitored at all times.

Day 1: Because they stopped taking opioids the previous evening, patients will be in mild withdrawal. A licensed and experienced healthcare provider will administer sedatives and other comfort medications in the office and prescribe medications to take throughout the day. They will administer a micro-dose of Naltrexone to speed up the healing process and make it more manageable.

Intermediate Day(s): The second day of the detox is similar to the first in that patients continue to receive more sedatives and comfort medications throughout the day. Physicians will adjust dosages to make it as comfortable as possible. Again, micro-dose Naltrexone helps the detox process.

Final Day: By the third and final day of the detox, patients will have made significant progress. Under light sedation, the remaining opioids are gently removed from their brain, typically over six to eight hours. They stay in a private and comfortable room with a bed where we monitor the patient closely. At this point the detox is complete, we administer long-acting Naltrexone, and the patient can return home knowing that all of the opioids have been removed from their brain.

 

5. What is Naltrexone therapy, and why is it important for opiate addiction?

Our ultimate goal with Accelerated Opiate Detox (AOD) is for patients to begin a life of abstinence — rather than treating addiction with a maintenance program that uses other opiates, such as Suboxone or methadone. We recognize that recovery is a challenging path to walk, filled with many opportunities for relapse. So, after AOD, we use Naltrexone therapy to help patients focus on their psychological healing without the temptations to use again.

Naltrexone is a non-addictive, non-narcotic medicine that attaches to the brain’s opiate receptors and completely blocks them. As a result, patients feel no effect from opiates while on Naltrexone and experience virtually no drug cravings..

We believe that 12 months of Naltrexone therapy gives patients the best chance for lasting recovery. This support allows their brain to physically heal from the opiates’ damage while they build the psychological tools and strength they need to Stay Clean for life.

 

6. How long should I be on Naltrexone Therapy?

Naltrexone is a medicine that blocks the opioid receptors in a person’s brain — which means it dramatically reduces cravings when they’re taking it. It is non-addictive and does not block the body’s natural endorphins. And if someone used an opioid while they are on Naltrexone, the medicine prevents the patient from feeling high.

The Coleman Institute has historically been a leader in the use of long-acting formulations of Naltrexone, using both implants and injections. Vivitrol® is an injectable form of naltrexone that is FDA-approved for use in the treatment of both Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD). For the best chance for lifelong recovery, we recommend that most patients continue with their Naltrexone therapy for a year after completing detox to give them enough time to develop new, healthy habits.

 

7. Is AOD effective for detoxing from methadone, Suboxone (buprenorphine) and Subutex?

We have found that this detox works particularly well for methadone, Suboxone (buprenorphine) and Subutex, as long as we extend the Accelerated Detox Program from its standard 3-8 days. We are able to safely and comfortably detox patients from even very high doses of these long-acting opiates.

 

8. Are there any risks and side effects?

As with any medical procedure, there are some possible risks if patients:

  • Do not follow through with the physician’s instructions,
  • Do not come in for their scheduled appointments, or
  • Take more medicine than prescribed.

Unlike Ultra Rapid Detox — which we do not offer because it has caused a number of deaths — the Accelerated Opiate Detox procedure is extremely safe.

 

9. How do patients feel during the detox?

On the initial detox day, patients will be in mild to moderate withdrawal, but we will give them medicine to dramatically reduce any symptoms. Throughout the rest of the detox, patients typically sleep a lot, eat well, have mild amnesia and report feeling quite comfortable.

Following the detox, patients often experience post-acute withdrawal symptoms (PAWS). During this recuperation period after detox, the brain receptors are healing and endorphin levels are rising back to a normal level. No matter which route a patient chooses to detox, there will always be a post-acute withdrawal phase. These vary a lot from person to person but tend to only last a few weeks. If a patient is having difficulty with post-acute withdrawal, our physicians can call in medications to help.

 

10. What happens after the detoxification?

We strongly believe that detoxification without appropriate follow up and treatment is almost always unsuccessful. Because of this we encourage and assist all of our patients to find a treatment program that will best suit their needs and begin therapy with an appropriate substance abuse facility in their area as soon as possible following detoxification. We combine our highly successful detox approach with ongoing case management to educate patients and their support systems.

 

11. What is the risk of overdosing after completing treatment?

Studies show that patients can commonly overdose and even die following periods of abstinence from narcotics. This can occur because their tolerance is much lower than when they were actively using.

Naltrexone is extremely good at making people abstinent, but when the Naltrexone wears off, patients will have very low opiate tolerance. Following any Naltrexone therapy, it is extremely easy for them to use too much heroin and have an overdose, which can be fatal. The Naltrexone is not causing the low tolerance, but instead the length of abstinence.

Patients need to clearly understand that if they choose abstinence, their lowered narcotic tolerance means that any relapse could be fatal.

 

12. What is the follow up with your facility?

Our team members can work with patients on a number of areas, including:

  • Naltrexone therapy for patient and support system
  • Education on the family dynamics of addiction
  • Identifying Post-Acute Withdrawal Symptoms (PAWS) and developing tools and resources to manage them
  • Relapse prevention planning

13. What does Accelerated Opiate Detox cost?

The treatment cost varies somewhat based on each patient’s specific usage patterns and treatment needs. Some commercial insurance plans now cover our detox procedure at select locations. Other commercial plans will reimburse a portion of your detoxification procedure. We can provide supporting documentation to help you seek reimbursement after your detox.

We accept all major credit cards and offer third-party financing for each of our treatment options to make treatment as financially feasible as possible.

We are dedicated to providing the most effective, affordable treatment option available.

For more specifics about pricing and financing, please call us now at 877-773-3869 or schedule a callback.

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