Dolophine, also known as Dolophine Hydrochloride CII, is the brand name for methadone hydrochloride, a narcotic pain reliever often used to reduce the withdrawal symptoms in people who are addicted to heroin or other narcotic drugs. It is also used in the treatment of moderate to severe pain in those who are not responsive to non-narcotic analgesics.
Dolophine relieves the pain associated with drug addiction detoxification and maintenance, without causing the “high” generally associated with drug use and addiction. Dolophine is available in tablets, as an oral solution or as an injection. The prescription of the drug must be strictly monitored as it is highly addictive and can create the same addiction and problems it is often used to address.
While Dolophine is administered in the treatment of those with an addiction to other drugs such as heroin, it is still a narcotic and as a result can cause dependence and addiction in users who are not closely monitored. Dolophine is a potent Schedule II opioid agonist, drugs which have the highest potential for abuse and risk of fatal overdose due to respiratory depression.
As Dolophine produces opioid effects, it has the ability to create a high degree of opioid tolerance which inhibits drug-seeking behavior. This element tends to be one of the biggest draws for those seeking to eliminate an addiction. The drug also blocks the euphoria produced by the usual doses of heroin, while it stops the pain associated with detoxification.
Physical dependence is manifested by withdrawal symptoms when an antagonist is abruptly discontinued. Medical professionals expect a physical dependence during opioid agonist therapy of an opioid addiction. Individuals who are being treated with Dolophine are likely suffering from withdrawal symptoms associated with their addiction. If the dose of the medication is too low, they can experience nasal congestion, abdominal symptoms, diarrhea, muscle aches and anxiety.
Other withdrawal symptoms patients could be dealing with in association of the withdrawal from Dolophine include, but are not limited to:
- Joint pain
- Abdominal cramps
- Increased blood pressure, respiratory rate or heart rate.
A Dolophine addiction is expected to be rare as individuals should only be receiving the medication under the care of a board-certified physician and board-certified addiction psychiatrist. Unfortunately, it is often diverted for recreational use and therefore, can be easily abused. As the drug can be obtained through illicit means – or even if the addiction develops under a physician’s care – it is important for users at any level to remove the drug from their system slowly and within a treatment environment.