With the approval 10.8.2002 of Suboxone® and Subutex® for treatment of opioid dependence (heroin, other narcotics) it may no longer be necessary to attend a methadone clinic. Dr. Edwards has obtained a waiver to provide this replacement treatment in his office. The drug is now available and Dr. Edwards is scheduling patients for evaluation and induction. Dr. Edwards, as of January, 2007, is able to treat up to 100 patients with buprenorphine.
Treatment will begin with an induction period ordinarily lasting no more than a few weeks, during which time visits as frequently as daily will be necessary to establish the best dose of the drug for you. You should have a recent physical exam by your primary care physician.
Dr. Edwards' usual fee structure will apply, but before starting you must pay in advance for your first 3 visits and your last visit. Contact your insurance company to determine whether this treatment will be covered. It may be billed under psychiatric codes. Dr. Edwards has opted out of Medicare and is not contracted with any insurance or managed care companies.
You will be asked to obtain your medication from a nearby pharmacy. Dr. Edwards does not keep controlled drugs in his office and will not dispense the drug to you. Your buprenorphine dose will be determined at each visit.
The time which has elapsed between your last use of heroin, methadone, or other opiate prior to your first use of buprenorphine is critical to assure that the buprenorphine does not cause withdrawal symptoms. Dr. Edwards will want to schedule your first buprenorphine dose according to which drug you have been using.
In order to obtain this treatment under Dr. Edwards' care you will be required to sign an informed consent form.