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Integrative Approach to Opiates, Opioids, and Opiate Use Disorder 

Integrative Approach to Opiates, Opioids, and Opiate Use Disorder
Integrative Approach to Opiates, Opioids, and Opiate Use Disorder

Walter Ling

, and Matthew Torrington

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date: 17 September 2021

This chapter defines terms such as “opiate” and “opioid” and explains their physiological functions as agonist, antagonist, and partial agonist. It notes the long history of medicinal opioid use for acute pain, as well as the curse of addiction with chronic use, highlighting the three opioid use epidemics in the United States: the morphine addiction of the Civil War era, the heroin addiction of the Vietnam War era, and the current epidemic of prescription opioid addiction. The chapter describes the commonly encountered natural, synthetic, and semi-synthetic opioids, noting their therapeutic use, potential for abuse, and their use in management of opioid use disorders. Of particular interest are the sections on detoxification and relapse prevention using methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone. The sections also explain the rationale for their use against the epidemiological background and recent exploration of genetic influences. The chapter also emphasizes the need for an integrated strategy in overcoming opioid addiction.

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