Lucemyra: The Latest Weapon in the Fight Against Opioid Addiction
Our country is currently facing the worst opioid epidemic we’ve ever seen. More than a hundred people die everyday from overdose, and still more are becoming addicted. While rehabilitation is an option, it doesn’t guarantee recovery. Especially when many of the medications involved in the treatment process are also opioids, similar to the ones that many have grown addicted to. Back in May of 2018, the FDA approved Lucemyra, the brand name for the chemical lofexedine, a new medication to treat the symptoms of opioid withdrawal. As of the following August, it is available for use.
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What Is Lucemyra?
Lucemyra is the first non-opioid that is being used to medically treat the symptoms of withdrawal. This is extremely helpful, as people in recovery in the past were sometimes likely to develop an addiction to substances that they were using to manage their symptoms of withdrawal. Lucemyra treats withdrawal by reducing the release of norepinephrine, a chemical in the body that is thought to be partly responsible for many opioid withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms include, but may not be limited to:
- Physical aches and pains
- Stomach cramps
- Nausea and vomiting
- Mild to severe insomnia
- Muscle spasms, twitching, and tension
- Increased heart rate
- Tearing eyes
Lucemyra is not without its faults. Though it may be a helpful medication for people who are suffering from an addiction to opioids, it is still a new medication and requires further study to determine how helpful it could be in the long term. Currently, known side effects include:
- Slowed heart rate
- Dry mouth
- Low blood pressure
- Lower blood pressure when standing
It is important to note that Lucemyra is not a medication for opioid use disorder, or opioid addiction, and will not stop someone from craving opioids. It will mitigate the symptoms of opioid withdrawal, helping people who are experiencing physical discomfort. However, it is not a cure and should be used as part of a greater recovery plan. Lucemyra should not be used with alcohol, benzodiazepines, or barbiturates. It is best taken during the time of peak withdrawal, generally the first five to seven days after a person’s last opioid use, and should not be taken for more than two weeks.
Using Lucemyra in Treatment
If traditional treatment medication has not worked for you or a loved one in the past, Lucemyra may help. The important thing to remember is that one medication cannot cure an addiction. Recovery is a long road and requires dedication and perseverance. It won’t be something that can be taken care of overnight, or even a year, but staying on the path can ensure long-term sobriety. Again, remember that Lucemyra is something that only should be taken when prescribed by a doctor as part of a greater treatment plan. If you are looking for help, but don’t know where to start, try reaching out to a dedicated treatment provider. They are available to speak whenever they are needed, and can provide you with more information.