First Trial: Deep Brain Stimulation Can Treat Opioid Addiction

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When we have pain, whether it is from toothache or injuries or other chronic conditions, opioids are often the first thing we turn to. By lowering the number of pain signals the body sends to the brain, opioids can relieve pain effectively.



However, the misuse of opioids — even for short term — may cause a dependency or addiction. Once one is addicted, it can be particularly hard to stop taking opioids. Eventually, opioids can mess up an individual’s life or even sentence that person to death.


Good news is that scientists are now conducting the first clinical trial in the US that uses deep brain stimulation to treat opioid addiction, which may better fight opioid addiction.


What is deep brain stimulation?



Deep brain stimulation, or DBS, is a surgery that places electrodes inside the patient's brain.


In this clinical trial, tiny electrodes will be planted into self-control and pleasure center of the brain, and presumably train the patient's brain to stop addicting to the drugs.


The first clinical trial took place in West Virginia



According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, overdose deaths involving opioids in West Virginia occurred at a rate of 49.6 deaths per 100,000 people in 2017.


In the first phase of the trial, there are four participants who cannot be effectively treated by traditional medication, as well as psychological and social treatment options. The first patient is a 33-year-old man who has a decade-long history of opioid and benzo abuse, overdoses and relapses.



DBS has already been proved by FDA to treat disorders like Parkinson's. If it can also be proved to treat opioid addiction, DBS may benefit millions of people in the future. For now, what you need to do is carefully following your doctor’s orders and making sure you only take the medication as prescribed.



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4 Answers

These messages are for mutual support and information sharing only. Always consult your doctor before trying anything you read here.

methadone is a fucking joke

it kills more people than heroin now

Everyone has the right to an opinion. Methadone helped save my life.
It's more than irritating, if not completly false to hear a doctor refer to opiate abuse and addiction by using misrepresented facts. According to the "National Institute on Drug Abuse" West Virgina recorded opiate deaths at rate 49.6 deaths per 100,000 people. What these FDA fed statistics don't tell us is that nearly all of those deaths are people using illicitly obtained opiate medications, are herion addicts, or are crushing then injecting their legally prescribed pain meds.
 The other misinformation above states that the only way someone can become addicted or dependant on prescribed opiates is if they're abusing them. This is a straight out and out lie. I have been taking 240 mgs of oxycontin ER and 120 mgs of oxycodone IR for 19 years. I have never, nit one time ever deviated from the prescribed doses, yet I am severely dependant. What's more, when I started taking the oxycontin in July of 2000, that doctor never told me it was an opiate, not did the pharmacy. After 2 years I learned from my pharmacist that it was in fact an opiate. I then went to my doctor with that information, to which he assured me that I couldn't possibly become dependant on those medications. That if I took them as prescribed I had nothing to fear. Well, here I am 19 years later, still taking them for chronic pain, but severely dependant. I have not one time run out early or ever requested an early fill. And now that all this false misinformation regarding dependancy and abuse is being fed to Americans. I'm now labeled as a drug addict thanks to the FDA, who BTW has no business dictating what medications and dosage treatment is right for me. As a result my 19 years of uneventful opiate pain management history will now be reducing me to a withdrawing addict starting this coming month. I an an elderly man, the road ahead will probably cost me my life, but the doctors and the FDA aren't concerned about my well being, only false statistics that promote their political agenda. Nothing they've concluded and sold to America has anything to do with me or others like me, we're just the victims who will pay the ultimate price. My last doctor of 10 years quit his practice because he couldn't allow the government to dictate his pain management agenda for patients the government knows absolutely nothing about.
 We are now being mistreated by puppet physicians whose primary agenda is making money by bending over for the government agencies calling the shots. These physicians that are still bin practice, thus playing ball with the agencies, really have no real interest in maintaining long term opiate treatment for patients who have uneventfully and according to prescribed instructions taken these medications for 5, 10 or 19 years as it were. Nope, they just look at us and tell us we will have our medications reduced to near nothing, and then do so with a cold, deliberate condecending approach. I'm furious, as well destitute. I'm now a candidate for an illicitly solution, something the government agencies are probably counting on, so as to promote the rehabilitation industry. What could be easier than dropping otherwise law abiding citizens on their preverbile drug dependant faces, thus forcing them either into illicite drug use, thus leading to a drug rehab facility, or death by herion over dose. Thank you FDA for managing my pain management future, ER mismanaging.
 As for the comment above regarding methadone, ya, I took it for about a month and almost stopped breathing.
It killed my son

Im not a pill popper but last year I had broke my arm and went home with a bottle of vicodin. I took as prescribed, 4-5 5 mg pills a night maybe, didnt took daytime, and for only one or two week. When I stopped I felt I was rotten and fucked up. Soooooo terrible for several days. After that days I felt I was back to normal again. Didnt think too much then. Now I think it's maybe some kind of dependence, it's lucky I didnt addicted to it.

Lucky you. Hope you are this lucky all the way long in your life.

This is totally wacky. Deep brain stimulation is very, very dangerous and has a high incidence of suicide and other very bad side effects, too. It's also irreversible. If it doesn't work, or makes you worse, you're stuck. It's not a good solution to anything. Period. 

You are much better off doing a drug detox program and getting off the opiods. Narconon or narconon First Steps is one that has very good statistics in all types of drug withdrawal and excellent results with low recurrence of problems afterward.

hi :) bross :)