Fentanyl Delivered via Transdermal Patch
Duragesic is used for moderate to severe pain relief, and one patch can provide up to 72 hours of pain relief. However, in addition to being an effective pain reliever, it is also very addictive.
Methods of Duragesic Drug Abuse
Many Duragesic abusers have found a way to overcome the time release nature of the drug by scraping the gel off the patch and taking it all at once through smoking, injecting, or ingesting it orally. This increases the possibility of overdose immensely as users consume 72 hours worth of the drug immediately. Others prefer heating an applied patch which can cause the drug to be released more quickly, resulting in a dramatically increased dosage.
Some Duragesic Drug Addicts Resort to Licking Someone Else’s Used Patch
Although many Duragesic drug abusers may start off taking the drug under a doctor’s supervision, once they become dependent, they will try and get the drug however they can. This can lead to prescription shopping with different doctors, feigning injuries, theft of patches – or even acquiring used patches (that still contain some of the drug) from someone with a prescription. The sight of an addict licking someone else’s used Duragesic patch speaks volumes as to the highly addictive nature of this drug and the lengths to which people will go to feed their Duragesic drug abuse.
Duragesic Drug Abuse Has a Long and Painful Period of Withdrawal
Duragesic, even when used as directed by a physician, can have a number of side effects, including: constipation, dry mouth, rash, sweating, hot flashes, dizziness, depression, and weight gain. Individuals can also rapidly develop a tolerance to the drug, causing them to have to increase their dosage to achieve the same effect. Another negative aspect of Duragesic drug abuse is the likelihood of a long and painful period of withdrawal when individuals stop taking the drug after using it long term. Symptoms of this withdrawal can last weeks and include: sweating, malaise, anxiety, cold flashes, depression, cramps, aches, leg kicking, yawning, sneezing, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramps, and fever.
Medically Supervised Duragesic Detox and Treatment
The severity of these symptoms and the resulting likelihood of relapse make quitting Duragesic drug abuse “cold turkey” a very bad idea. Individuals seeking to quit should always do so in a medically supervised setting such as a professional drug detox and treatment facility.