Propoxyphene

Darvon®, Darvocet®, Wygesic®, Balacet®, Propacet®

Darvon® is one of the top 10 most abused prescription drugs, according to the federal Drug Enforcement Agency. A mild narcotic painkiller, Darvon® and other prescriptions containing propoxyphene are in danger of being taken off the market. They are addictive and usually not any more effective at relieving pain than aspirin. Propoxyphene is derived from opium and is categorized in the same family of drugs as morphine, heroin, OxyContin, and Fentanyl.

Some drug users abuse propoxyphene only to tide themselves over when they cannot obtain their preferred drug, usually heroin. However, many people grow dependent on Darvon® and other products containing propoxyphene after their doctors prescribe them for pain relief, diarrhea, or restless leg syndrome. A doctor typically prescribes 65 ml of propoxyphene per day. A person who has built up a tolerance to propoxyphene can typically take 250 to 400 ml per day, putting his or her health at risk.

When people try to quit taking propoxyphene on their own, they usually experience withdrawal symptoms similar to those produced by other opiates. These symptoms are like a terrible case of flu – muscle aches, headaches, sweats, chills, and so on, plus terrible anxiety and insomnia. Besides the actual physical symptoms, propoxyphene dependency also produces accompanying psychological problems. Anxiety, depression, and drug cravings usually surface once you stop taking opiates.

Discuss treatment options with a trained counselor right now. Some people prefer to replace propoxyphene with another drug such as methadone so that they do not have to go through painful physical withdrawal. Others prefer to go through physical withdrawal in a residential treatment center. How long this takes and how severe your symptoms are will depend on individual factors such as how long and how much propoxyphene you have been using, as well as your sex, age, weight, and general health.

Once you are physically free from propoxyphene, you will still have to deal with any underlying psychological issues. Why did you become dependent on drugs in the first place? If you have an underlying psychological problem, such as bipolar disorder or clinical depression, you can deal with that in therapy with a professional counselor. You will also need to learn how to avoid using drugs again by finding healthy outlets for stress. These may include sports, art, music, or relaxation techniques. You need to know how to handle situations, places, and people that may trigger a relapse into drug abuse.

When you are in a residential treatment center, you attend classes and counseling sessions on a more or less full-time basis. If you choose an outpatient program, you can live at home and attend classes and counseling after work or school. It can often take a year or more to stop craving your old drug, and many people have several relapses before they are completely and permanently drug-free.

If you are the custodial parent of a minor child dependent on Darvon® or any other prescription drug, you have the right to check your child into a treatment center without his or her consent. Even unwilling teenagers can achieve excellent outcomes at therapeutic boarding schools or wilderness programs.