After seeing a rise in OxyContin abuse over the past decades, the drug was reformulated to include abuse-deterrent properties. While it is true that the reformulation had some effect in getting abusers and addicts to stop using OxyContin, it only worked to some extent. 25% of drug users admitted to rehabilitation facilities still abuse the drug, proving that illicit use, while down, has not been eliminated. The original OxyContin contained high doses of oxycodone that were designed to release over a long period of time, which users got around by crushing and snorting the powder. The newer version was designed to prevent the crushing and dissolving. Though the reformulation had some effect, researchers now worry that users will make a switch to other types of drugs.
Science Daily explains more:
“The abuse-deterrent formulation was introduced in 2010 at a time when 45 percent of study participants entering drug treatment reported they had used OxyContin to get high at least once in the previous 30 days. Two years later, the percentage of those who got high with the abuse-deterrent form of the drug in the month before entering a treatment center had fallen to 26 percent…[but] of those who had stopped using OxyContin and switched to another drug, 70 percent started using heroin instead.”
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