Sunday, March 30, 2014

The Methadone Diaries.

The Methadone Diaries.

This is Greg’s Methadone diary. It details what he experienced and how challenging it can be to come off the Methadone program.

Introduction. (A brief background to add context to the Diaries). 

Greg had been on Methadone since he turned 20, he had been addicted mainly to Heroin and the prescription opiates Morphine and Oxycodone. Greg went on the Methadone program to stop his expensive drug habit. He is now 28 and coming off methadone for the third time. He also recently completed his University Degree in pharmacology. Greg has not used heroin in 2 years, but he has been caught diverting his Methadone dose twice in the past, but still he gets 2 take-home doses per week. If he gets caught again, unknown to him, he will lose his take home doses and be forced off the Methadone program.

 Greg spent three months in prison after being arrested for drug related armed robberies and was sentenced to 3 months of house arrest with a tracking anklet after waiting for his trial in prison. The ankle bracelet had a buzzer that warned the local authorities if he had left his house. This ensured that Greg did not stray from the house for the three months he was wearing the anklet. He was sentenced to 3 years of probation, conditional on his completing 1 year of Drug Court rehabilitation. Greg simply had to produce urine that tested negative for drugs, to demonstrate he was no longer using drugs nicotine and methadone were excempt from the drug test. Greg passed the Drug Court program where he was significantly rehabilitated. Now Greg has finished his 3 years of probation. This week Greg will be forced to come off Methadone. Last time he came off Methadone, which was cold turkey, Greg started using Heroin again.. Almost half of people who come off Methadone relapse into opiate addiction.

Diary Entry: Day 1. 8:00-8:20am

 The Calm Before the Storm.

8:00am - Greg walks into his local pharmacy, something he has done five or more days a week, for the last half decade. He say's hello to Milo, the pharmacist, who replies with the usual formalities. Greg takes a seat and takes two plastic cups from the water dispenser, one to pour his diverted Methadone dose into, and one to act as a distraction. Greg waits while the pharmacist unlocks the drug safe to get Greg's daily Methadone maintenance dose of 100 mg's.

After a minute, Milo returns to the counter holding Greg’s Methadone in a small plastic shot cup - Methadone has water and food colouring added - It can be used intravenously if one has a micron filter to filter out any microbes - and produces a rush just short of Heroin and Oxycodone. 

Greg hands $15 dollars over to the pharmacist, to pay for 3 doses and to act as a further distraction. He also informs Milo that he will need his 2 take-home doses today. Whilst Milo is occupied - putting the money in the register and busy putting the takeaway doses into two 100ml plastic bottles - Greg pours his undiluted dose of Methadone into the cup near the water dispenser and quickly puts it in his pocket.

 Milo returns with Greg’s 2 take-home doses and Greg walks out exchanging the usual goodbyes - with all 3 doses, 300mg of Methadone in Greg’s exigent and excited possession...

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