Samuel Gershon: Device for naltrexone delivery


          There is a current (June 6, 2019) New York Times report from Australia about Dr. George O’Neal on his invention of an implant that can provide daily doses of naltrexone to subjects for about six months. Dr. O’Neal concludes in the article that his patients must fulfill a number of requirements before he will proceed to implant naltrexone:

1.      They must understand the entire treatment plan and comply with all requirements

2.      They must enter and complete a drug withdrawal treatment program

3.      They must enter a rehabilitation program and complete it satisfactorily and then  he will proceed to implant the device to provide a six-month supply of naltrexone

          So, these requirements needed to fulfill eligibility make evaluation of outcome more difficult.

          The article went on to say that NIH will fund naltrexone implantation studies at Columbia University - $6.8 million for two years with a possibility of an additional $13 plus million.

          However, the experts in the discussion may wish to consider whether this device could contribute any answers to their discussion. One wonders whether such a device would offer advantages in using naltrexone in treatment.


October 17, 2019