Methadone is a synthetic opioid analgesic developed in Germany in the 1930’s. It was developed in the 1960’s in the U.S. as a treatment for opioid addiction by Vincent Dole along with his colleagues Drs. Marie Nyswander and Mary Jeanne Kreek. Now methadone treatment for opioid use disorder is regulated by federal law and must be delivered out of a specially licensed clinic, often referred to a methadone clinic, opioid treatment program, or OTP. Lott Behavioral Health does not currently offer methadone treatment. Strict guidelines must be followed including the dosing and frequency of clinic visits, making it a very controlled, regimented type of treatment. This can be very helpful for patients needing this type of careful monitoring and supervision.
However, for many people the daily clinic visits create a difficult burden. Now buprenorphine (Suboxone) is available in a way that makes treatment more convenient. Suboxone can be delivered from the OTP the same way as methadone, but it can also be prescribed from a regular medical office by eligible physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants.