By Dawn Cranfield
FDA Determined to Deter Addicts, Changes Label on Oxycodone
At a time when oxycodone use has surpassed morphine and has become a favored choice among addicts for snorting and injecting, the US Food and Drug Authority (FDA) has approved a plan to relabel the opioid analgesic OxyContin. The revised label will prominently feature the drug’s reformulated properties to “warn addicts it is unsuitable for snorting or injecting” according to a media release from the FDA. (nzdoctor.co)
While the plan appears at first to be a minor step in the war against drugs, the manufacturer of the product has also taken steps to deter users from misusing the product. The new form of the drug has made it challenging to break, crush, or dissolve. Additionally, it will be a viscous hydrogel making it difficult to be injected by users.
However, Whangarei GP and addiction specialist Alistair Dunn, who believes this could may be a deterrent to some abusers who access the drug illegally, warns, “It’s still oxycodone.” (nzdoctor.co)
Although the newly revamped drug is expected to reduce incidents or patient abuse, Dr. Dunn says it should still only be prescribed as a second choice to morphine and only then if the patient also has renal impairment.
Oxycodone was originally approved by the FDA in 1995 under the brand name OxyContin. In April 2010, the reformulated version was approved and proven to have the same effectiveness as the original.
It is expected that the generic versions of oxycodone will adopt the reformulations as well.