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OxyContin Gets a Makeover

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OxyContin Gets a Makeover

generic oxycontin
Reducing Prescription Drug Abuse
Prescription drug abuse is a major problem in the United States. Many people start off needing prescription pain medicine but end up misusing, abusing and eventually becoming addicted. OxyContin, a narcotic painkiller that relieves moderate to severe pain, became one of the most abused prescription drugs because it was easily crushed to snort or inject. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has made an effort to limit abuse of OxyContin. Out with the Old, In with the New The FDA approved OxyContin in 1995, but no one could have predicted the prescription drug epidemic that would follow it. In 2010, manufacturer Purdue Pharma reformulated OxyContin, making it more difficult to abuse. The new pill is harder, making it difficult to crush to snort or sprinkle on food. It is difficult to dissolve and turns into a sticky gel-like substance, preventing the addict’s ability to inject the drug. The new formulation also gave Purdue Pharma a new patent and more years of patent protection. Now, the FDA has decided to not approve generic versions of the drug that have the original, easily abused formulation. All generic versions must have the same tamper-proof formulation of current OxyContin tablets. The FDA approved new labels for the drug. The labels will say that the newly formulated drug will make abuse difficult. This stands as a warning to OxyContin abusers and may deter their attempts of abuse. Do you think the FDA’s change in labeling will reduce the instance of OxyContin abuse? Or does the FDA decision just harm legitimate chronic pain patients who need cheaper generic drugs? Share your thoughts below or on Stepping Stone Center’s Facebook page.


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