By: Bethany Winkel
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FDA Approves New Narcotic Painkiller
There are many dangers that come with using prescription painkillers, including the risk of addiction. The FDA is constantly reviewing old and new medications to determine their safety and usability. A new drug, Hysingla ER (hydrocodone bitartrate) has recently been approved by the FDA, and it is hoped the medication will help thwart abuse.
The drug is an extended release tablet that is difficult to crush or break, which deters people from trying to snort it to get high. It also forms a viscous gel when a person tries to dissolve it, making it nearly impossible to inject.
Hysingla has been developed in response to the great need for effective pain relief in a form that is not easily abused. The medication can be used for long-term, around-the-clock relief for moderate to severe pain. The hope is that patients can experience the benefits of this medication without it becoming another drug of choice for those looking for an opioid high.
As with any drug, Hysingla can still be abused and can still cause side effects. It should only be taken with a prescription, and only used as directed.
“While the science of abuse deterrence is still evolving, the development of opioids that are harder to abuse is helpful in addressing the public health crisis of prescription drug abuse in the U.S.,” said Janet Woodcock, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, in a press release. “Preventing prescription opioid abuse is a top public health priority for the FDA, and encouraging the development of opioids with abuse-deterrent properties is just one component of a broader approach to reducing abuse and misuse, and will better enable the agency to balance addressing this problem with ensuring that patients have access to appropriate treatments for pain.”
Read more about Hysingla and its potential benefits here.