May 31, 2021
Ultra-rapid opioid detoxification (UROD) is a modern and highly effective drug detoxification method.
When an addict decides to end his or her addiction, the path to overcoming withdrawal begins. Self-withdrawal is a very painful and dangerous process, which increases the risk of relapse or can lead to serious health complications. UROD, however, has advantages over the traditional procedures of detoxification from addictive substances. This increasingly popular detoxification method should be performed in an institution so that the patient can be under constant medical supervision.
UROD has proven to be an extremely efficient method aimed at accelerating the process of body purification and, at the same time, reducing or shortening the intensity of unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. It is performed when the diagnosis finds no existing contraindications for this type of detoxification. Read this article to learn more about the procedure, its effectiveness and related issues.
Ultra-rapid opioid detox: the procedure
After diagnostics, ultra-rapid opioid detoxification forms the next step in complete addiction treatment. It is used primarily to cleanse the system of all traces of psychoactive substances, which makes it an integral part of the entire treatment for drug dependence.
During ultra-rapid opioid detoxification, the patient is under anesthesia for 6 to 8 hours of the day, and is monitored by the doctors 24-hours a day. Opiate antagonists are gradually introduced into the body, usually naloxone or naltrexone and, in this way, opiates are eliminated from receptors. It is usually necessary for the patient to go through two or three such procedures to complete the detoxification process. During ultra-rapid detoxification, patients are under 24-hour supervision.
During the procedure, a team consisting of anesthesiologists and other healthcare staff monitors the patient’s vital parameters. Under intensive care, patients receive naltrexone and naloxone through slow-acting infusion, which allows the body to free up opioid receptors. Immediately upon waking up, patients report feeling the rush of energy, as the chemical balance in the brain begins to return to normal.
Advantages of ultra-rapid detoxification
The essence of ultra-rapid detoxification is that the patient overcomes most of the crisis symptoms while asleep, thus avoiding all negative symptoms, such as pain and anxiety. When the patient wakes up after anesthesia, the strongest part of the crisis has already passed.
Even if, after waking up, some minimal symptoms of the crisis remain, their intensity is significantly reduced and they can be eliminated easily by traditional, non-opioid analgesics. During the detoxification process, it is usually necessary for the patient to go through two or three such procedures.
Self-withdrawal from opiates is very dangerous, and attempts to quit opiates on your own, without medical help, can cause severe physical and mental changes. Nausea, diarrhea, runny nose, watery eyes, abdominal sweating, muscle twitching, and other unpleasant symptoms are reported. In addition, high fever, rapid breathing, and high blood pressure may make the withdrawal experience unbearable. These unpleasant physical symptoms can last 3 to 4 weeks during self-withdrawal.
Because many addicts fear the crisis symptoms of withdrawal, or can’t stand passing through this stage, they do not stop using opiates. However, with the help of medical ultra-rapid detoxification, this process becomes painless and very well tolerated.
Thus, ultra-rapid detoxification is a quick and painless way to avoid the potentially severe physical and psychological symptoms of the crisis, and is the best option for all long-term addictions on methadone, morphine sulfate, Oxycontin, Substitol and other opioids.
Differences between UROD and ROD
Ultra-rapid opioid detox and rapid opioid detox are often thought of as the same thing but, apart from the main goal, which includes the elimination of psychoactive substances from the body, they are entirely different procedures.
While both procedures are highly effective, compared to traditional treatment methods or self-detoxification performed at home, UROD is a lot faster. One session lasts from 6 to 8 hours, and it is usually repeated several times before all traces of toxins are removed from the system. This is achieved through the use of naltrexone and naloxone, opioid antagonists which occupy the receptors in the brain. Because of this, the withdrawal symptoms related to drug detox are greatly reduced or completely eliminated.
ROD is slower acting and it relies on substances, such as Subutex or Methadone, which are not as effective at detoxifying or removing withdrawal symptoms. Additionally, both of these substances can cause addiction of their own. That is the reason why UROD is considered the safer and more effective procedure.
Success rates and effectiveness of this procedure
The advantage of UROD can be found in the fact that this treatment is not only a great option when it comes to the elimination of toxins from the body. Upon completion of this procedure, patients also report fewer psychological problems related to addiction. The cravings for the psychoactive substances are significantly reduced, which may lead many to believe that the problems with addiction have completely ended.
It is important to note, however, that UROD only represents one step in the addiction treatment program. In order to eliminate the need for psychoactive substances completely, patients will have to undertake additional procedures that will help them to achieve complete recuperation, prevent long-term relapse and return to healthy habits that can last a lifetime.
Patients who undergo ultra-rapid detox have a much higher chance of maintaining sobriety over an extended period of time when compared to individuals who attempt to perform a self-rehab. The success rate of this painless and effective procedure is measured at 80%, where patients were able to avoid relapse for at least two years after undergoing complete addiction treatment programs that began with diagnostics and were followed by UROD.
What are the possible risks of UROD?
UROD has been successfully performed in many rehab centers around the world for more than 20 years. Just with any other medical procedure, certain risks of side effects always persist, and that is why it is vital to perform this procedure in a medical facility, with constant monitoring from the trained healthcare staff.
In cases where individuals attempt to perform ultra-rapid detox at home, without medical supervision, the procedure becomes a lot riskier. Self-induced detox may result in some of the following symptoms:
- High blood pressure
- Gastrointestinal pain and cramps
- Flu-like symptoms
- Rapid heartbeat
- Delirium (in severe cases)
Most of these symptoms are completely eliminated through proper use of pharmacotherapy, prescribed by doctors, but if the detox is performed at home, symptoms usually fade over time. In cases where some of these symptoms persist, individuals need to seek medical assistance. That is why the experts always advise performing ultra-rapid detox in a facility that is best suited for this, such as a rehab center.
What happens after detoxification?
After the ultra-rapid detox procedure is complete, patients wake up without signs of withdrawal symptoms. All of the toxins are removed from the body, which gives them a new dose of energy, and they report feeling better than they have in a long time.
This is the ideal time to continue with the next phases of addiction treatment. These include the procedures for treatment of psychological addiction by a psychotherapist, which helps with eliminating the urge to consume psychoactive substances, while creating a strong repulsion towards the negative habits that may lead to relapse.
Depending on specific cases, inpatient treatment may also include psychostabilization, psychotherapy, physiotherapy and pharmacological blockade. All of these procedures lead to one ultimate goal: a life without the need for psychoactive substances. With that in mind, follow-up outpatient treatment that lasts for 12 months after discharge helps establish new habits that assist patients to avoid relapse and create healthy habits for a new, abuse-free life.
Frequently asked questions
Is ultra-rapid detox considered a safe procedure?
When performed under the guidance of healthcare staff after a thorough examination, ultra-rapid detox is considered a safe procedure that may produce only minor side effects which can be treated easily through pharmacotherapy.
How long does the procedure last?
The ultra-rapid detox procedure lasts about 7 hours per session, during which patients are under anesthesia. Depending on each specific case and the amount of psychoactive substance found in the system, the procedure can be repeated several times until the desired results are achieved.
Is UROD an effective detox method for all types of addiction?
After use of psychoactive substances, toxins may remain in the body for several days. UROD offers the most effective method for removing all of these substances from the body and it has shown great results with different types of addiction, such as those to heroin, methadone, benzodiazepines and others.
Published on May 31, 2021