Methadone Linked With Lower Rates of Death in Those with Criminal History

People with a criminal conviction who have a history of opioid addiction may be less likely to die of an overdose or other causes when they are being treated with methadone, a new study concludes.

The study included 14,530 Canadians with criminal convictions who were prescribed methadone between 1998 and 2015. During that period, 1,275 participants died. The researchers found people were 59 percent less likely to die of overdoses, injuries, poisonings, falls and assaults while they were in methadone treatment than at other times. When they were receiving treatment, they were 73 percent less likely to die of natural causes such as chronic health problems or acute illnesses, Reuters reports.

“When people aren’t taking methadone then they are probably using other opiates, with unknown purity and in forms that deliver faster effects and at higher doses, increasing the risk of overdose,” said lead researcher Julian Somers.

The study is published in PLOS Medicine.

Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction

Medication-assisted treatment can help your child overcome his or her opioid addiction. Learn more about what it is, how it works and if it could work for your family.

doctor writing prescription

Leave a Comment

Please leave a comment below to contribute to the discussion. If you have a specific question, please contact a Parent Specialist, who will provide you with one-on-one help.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *