There are only about 4,000 of us with Addiction Medicine Specialty Certification in the US and with the Opiate Addiction Epidemic, this Specialty is going to grow exponentially to meet the growing need.
There are a limited number of physicians granted permission by SAMSHA to treat up to 275 patients with Opiate Use Disorder in their practice with Buprenorphine Products. I am glad to say that our practice has been granted this waiver.
There are currently 2 Modalities of treating most patients with Substance Use Disorders, the Cornerstone of which is 1) Counseling- whether in a 12-Step Program or Intensive Outpatient Program or Alcoholic Anonymous Self-Help Programs or Narcotic Anonymous Programs. These Counseling Services are then complemented by 2) Pharmacotherapy in some specific situations.
With respect to Opiate Use Disorder, there are primarily 3 FDA Approved Drugs that can be used as adjuncts to Psychotherapy (Counseling), namely Methadone, Buprenorphine Products ( Suboxone, Zubsolv, Bunavail, Belbuca, Butrans, Probuphine ) and Naltrexone (Vivitrol)- LAAM having been pulled from the market a few years ago for safety reasons related to CardiovascularAdverse effects. Buprenorphine and Methadone have their advantages and disadvantages in a head to head comparison as well as their respective proponents and detractors.
Suboxone & Internal Medicine Services of Menlo Park