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Methadone

dm+d VMPP - 1104511000001109

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Methadone, sold under the brand name Dolophine among others, is an opioid used for opioid maintenance therapy in opioid dependence and for chronic pain management. Detoxification using methadone can be accomplished in less than a month, or it may be done gradually over as long as six months. While a single dose has a rapid effect, maximum effect can take up to five days of use. The pain-relieving effects last about six hours after a single dose. After long-term use, in people with normal liver function, effects last 8 to 36 hours. Methadone is usually taken by mouth and rarely by injection into a muscle or vein.Side effects are similar to those of other opioids. These frequently includes dizziness, sleepiness, vomiting, and sweating. Serious risks include opioid abuse and a decreased effort to breathe. Abnormal heart rhythms may also occur due to a prolonged QT interval. The number of deaths in the United States involving methadone poisoning declined from 4,418 in 2011 to 3,300 in 2015. Risks are greater with higher doses. Methadone is made by chemical synthesis and acts on opioid receptors.Methadone was developed in Germany around 1937 to 1939 by Gustav Ehrhart and Max Bockmühl. It was approved for use in the United States in 1947. Methadone is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system. In 2013, about 41,400 kilograms were manufactured globally. It is regulated similarly to other narcotic drugs. It is not particularly expensive in the United States.

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