OxyContin is an opioid derived from Oxycodone. Oxycodone was first developed in Germany in 1916 where it was intended to serve as a non-addictive alternative to other opioids used for pain management during the first world war. During the war, an increasing number of people were developing addictions to pain medications such as heroine and morphine. Oxycodone, the developers hoped, would provide the pain relief patients needed without the harmful side effects of addiction and abuse. As the rates of Oxycodone addiction show, that plan failed.
In 1939, Oxycodone was brought to the United States. OxyContin, however, didn’t arrive until Purdue Pharma began manufacturing it from Oxycodone in 1996. Purdue Pharma earned $45 million in sales from OxyContin in its first year on market alone. By 2000, sales had risen to $1.1 billion, increasing by over 2000% in barely more than four years. By the next year, it was the best selling pain relieve in the United States. This was also when it began to become one of the favored methods of getting high by drug abusers.
At ten years of age, OxyContin dominated the prescription painkiller market with $3.1 billion in profits and 30% of the market. OxyContin had become one of the most widely used prescription drugs of all time. It would also become one of the most abused prescriptions of all time.
By 2001, Purdue Pharma was aware of the abuse problems OxyContin was causing. And yet, they spent over $200 million to market the drug. This may have been in part to continue filling the coffers of the new marketing executives they’d been hiring over the past four years. Between 1996 and 2000, Purdue Pharma, thrilled at the insurmountable success of its new drug, doubled the size of its sales and marketing team. Marketing professionals were lured to the team by average annual bonuses of $70,000.
Life was looking good for OxyContin and Purdue Pharma. Until the lawsuits began to pile up. In 2007, the attacks turned to Purdue Pharma’s aggressive and misleading marketing tactics. The company had been not only promoting the drug high and low, but also encouraging users to take more than the recommended dose. In May of 2007, Purdue Pharma was forced to pay $635 million fines after pleading guilty of misleading marketing strategies and shortly after was charged with miss-branding OxyContin to convince doctors and users it was safe and OxyContin addiction was not a problem.
Where is OxyContin today?
OxyContin remains a frequent black market attendee. It’s sold under various names from “OC” to “Hillbilly Heroin.” Some would tell you its only because of the aggressive marketing done by Purdue Pharma that OxyContin remains popular today. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, there are nearly 11 million people in the U.S. who have taken one or more doses of OxyContin for non-medical purposes. It remains one of the leading contributors to the rate of addiction among Americans, a number in excess of 20 million individuals over the age of 12.
What’s the answer to OxyContin addiction?
While the best solution would be to stop drug abuse once and for all, that’s not likely to happen. Instead, many addicts are turning to a new program for help curing their addiction: the Ibogaine treatment program.
Ibogaine is a natural hallucinogenic derived from the root bark of an African shrub. In West Africa, the drug has been used as part of initiation ceremonies for over 50 years. Not until recently has it become popular for its ability to help addicts overcome their addictions by eliminating the symptoms of withdrawal.
In the Ibogaine treatment program, addicts undergo Ibogaine therapy to help them overcome their addiction to opioids. Ibogaine treatment for opiate addiction is so effective because of Ibogaine’s ability to mitigate the symptoms of withdrawal. Under the Ibogaine treatment program, Ibogaine has been found to eliminate 98% or more of withdrawal symptoms while also significantly lowering the craving for stimulants or alcohol. Each year, addicts turn to an Ibogaine treatment program to take the next step in their recovery process. Who knows, an Ibogaine treatment program could be the answer you’ve been looking for.