HOT Topics in Buprenorphine Treatment: Sessions are presented the second Tuesday of each month at noon Eastern. Physicians who have waivers to prescribe buprenorphine for the treatment of opioid dependence and other interested clinicians are invited to participate in these free sessions. Each webinar is recorded and available on this site.

Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Dependence in Adolescents and Young Adults

Presenters are
Sharon Levy, M.D., M.P.H.
Director, Adolescent Substance Abuse Program, Children's Hospital Boston
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
Harvard Medical School
and
Ximena Sanchez-Samper, M.D.
Adolescent Substance Abuse Program, Children's Hospital Boston
Instructor, Harvard Medical School

Opioid dependence among adolescents is a growing problem in the United States. According to data from the Monitoring the Future study which surveys adolescents in high school, use of ‘narcotics other than heroin’ by teenagers has doubled over the past ten years.

A large body of evidence has demonstrated that buprenorphine is effective in treating opioid dependent adults, both for detoxification and long term maintenance; however, there is little consensus regarding the optimal length of medication treatment for adolescents, whose brains are still developing. Few medication studies have included adolescents, but accumulating evidence suggests that opioid replacement therapy can be effective in reducing relapse rates with adolescent populations by stabilizing neurochemistry, ameliorating withdrawal, and curbing cravings.

This webinar will present current “best practice” guidelines for managing opioid dependent adolescents, including review of (1) epidemiology of opioid misuse/abuse/dependence, (2) opioid neurobiology, (3) developmental considerations pertinent to treating adolescents/young adults, and (4) safe opioid prescribing practices.