“Patients prescribed medication-assisted treatments with buprenorphine, methadone, and naltrexone are getting older…as we all are. This is wonderful, because it means our patients are surviving, making it to old age. Methadone has been prescribed for the longest of the three, so we tend to see more older patients on it.
Aging in our patients can present specific challenges; research literature shows high rates of physical and psychological illness in opioid users in general, meaning as this population ages, we can expect to see even more co-occurring illnesses.
When looking for information about aging MAT patients, I was appalled to see a journal article define “older adult” as those fifty and above. I’ve always thought of “older” as being, well, older than me. I’m no longer pushing fifty – I’ve been pulling it behind me for nearly seven years, so I felt a little resentful on behalf of my patients.”
Part II can be accessed at: https://janaburson.wordpress.com/2018/05/16/older-patients-at-opioid-treatment-programs-part-2/
Source: Dr. Jana Burson – May 10 and 16, 2018