Answer to "Methadone in Question"

By Dr Dolophine

From: Al Lee <>

To: <>

Sent: Tuesday, February 20, 2001 9:22 AM

Subject: Detox group?


Hi Izzy, I thought this may be of some interest to the detox group:

In response to an article I wrote for a U.S. methadone advocacy newsletter called Methadone Awareness which is now posted on the interzone site in the medical section under the title "report from Tasmania", I received the email included below. I have also included my reply.

the email:
" Dear Dr. Dolphine

I have just read your posting from 1998 and find it the biggest load of c**p that I have read on the subject.

NO wonder you find the Tasmanian programme the best in Aus anyone would who was having 60mgs to dose and 60mgs to take home thats blockade 120mgs nobodys metabalism is that fast seeing methadone has a 36 hr after life I will put your idea to other doctors and see what they say and if they would be willing to split other clients doses I doubt it. I find that most
people on that dose would find it very hard to get stoned on narcotics let alone spending hundreds of dollars trying, just to have their dose put up its BLOCKADE.

As for Terry the complaints are coming in thick and fast of being treated like second class citizens, being refused their dose if they don't have the money and being unable to change pharmists if they owe any money.

Keep your ear to the ground and talk to other clients.

P.S I am not on Methadone"

My Reply:

"Dear Louise,
Thankyou for your letter.

I have merely related accurately and honestly my own personal experience. I have no doubt that there are many clients/patients in Australia and internationally who are treated shabbily. It was an instance of this in a clinic in the US, recorded in Methadone Awareness newsletter that prompted my letter to that publication - same letter which is posted.
I am very lucky to have such a satisfactory setup viz my pharmacist and doctor. Far from disagreeing with the complaints you mention, I whole-heartedly support the complainants and sincerely hope that our efforts and voices will be heard and heeded so that my own situation could be the very least that a person on Methadone could expect.
As far as my particular dose goes, that is a matter between myself and my doctor. It is included only as an example of the flexibility which I am fortunate enough to have been allowed and which is sadly missing from most programs. According to current pharmaceutical indexes, methadone taken orally lasts approximately 8 hours at the first dose and 18 - 24 for
subsequent following doses, since it acts cumulatively. I have read and heard claims of 30-36 hours, but never from people who have first hand experience.
In conclusion, I can only stress again that I have only related my own personal experiences, and not with the motive of lauding the methadone maintenance program in general (and I do mean maintenance - as far as I am concerned methadone is contra-indicated for reduction purposes), but rather to point out the obvious disparity between what one can expect at best and
the all too common and familiar poor treatment which so many endure.

- Al Lee"

Please pass this on if you think it is of interest.

P.S. looks like were having a nationwide shortage of smack in Australia. The news reports it as well as users I know on Mainland Australia.

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