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BALTIMORE, MD (June 9, 2011) —Ameritox, the leader in pain medication monitoring, today announced the launch of Rx Guardian CDSM, its next-generation pain medication monitoring solution and part of the patented Rx GuardianSM process. This new science will help physicians interpret patients’ urine drug test (UDT) results so they can identify potential misuse, abuse or diversion of opioid pain medications. A propriety algorithm and reference database of more than 1,000 chronic pain patients clinically assessed for adherence to their prescription regimens, Rx Guardian CDSM will assist clinicians as they evaluate if patients are taking medications as prescribed.
“For clinicians treating the 50 million U.S. chronic-pain sufferers, helping patients find safe, effective relief is the ultimate priority – and ensuring that medications are taken appropriately is a critical part of that mission,” said Harry Leider, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Ameritox. “The Rx Guardian process has evolved to include the Rx Guardian CD science, offering opioid prescribers a powerful clinical tool to help them assess patient adherence, protect patient safety and improve standards of care.”
Chronic pain is the most common cause of long-term disability in the United States, affecting 50 million Americans2. Treatment with prescription narcotics (i.e., opioids) is an effective and critical treatment for a significant subset of this population that has more severe pain that cannot be controlled with other medications and treatments. However, opioid abuse is a rapidly growing national problem, with substance abuse treatment admissions for opioid abuse among the 18-24 year-old population increasing more than 700% between 1998 and 20083.
To reduce the potential for misuse, abuse and diversion, clinical guidelines created by the American Pain Society and American Academy of Pain Medicine support routine monitoring, including urine drug testing, of chronic opioid patients to help physicians confirm medication adherence. However, a recent study reported that just 8% of patients on long-term opioid treatment receive pain medication monitoring through urine drug testing in primary care practices4.
Rx Guardian CD consists of a new reference database of more than 1,000 pain patients who have been clinically assessed and found to adhere to their prescription regimens. Doctors can compare their patients’ urine drug test results to those of the pain patients in the reference database, helping to identify patients who are likely taking their medication correctly.
“More than ever, prescribers face the challenge of providing optimal patient care while preventing prescription drug abuse,” said Michael Barnes, spokesperson for CLAAD, the Center for Legal Access and Abuse Deterrence. “Routine monitoring using advanced drug testing technologies can help prescribers improve patient care, identify individuals who need addiction treatment, and deter and detect individuals who intend to divert or abuse medications.”
Patients, who may have no intent to abuse a medication, may not always take them correctly: they may choose to take too little due to fear of addiction, or take too much because of inadequate pain control. While traditional urine drug testing can only report the absence or presence of a drug or metabolite, the Rx Guardian CD process uses an additional technology to assist doctors in determining potential misuse or abuse of opioids. Patient results are adjusted based on physiological variables such as weight and hydration, and these adjusted values are then compared to the reference database, providing clinicians with additional information in assessing pain medication adherence.
Additional information for clinicians, patients, and policy makers can be accessed online at http://rxguardian.ameritox.com.
Ameritox is the nation’s leader in pain medication monitoring solutions, offering specialized laboratory testing and reporting services. Ameritox’s expertise and innovative science provide physicians with insights and support to enhance and optimize the care of chronic pain patients. Ameritox offers the most thorough pain medication monitoring lab process — Rx GuardianSM — with Rx Guardian CDSM, the only pain medication monitoring solution with a proprietary normalization algorithm and a reference database of pain patients clinically assessed for medication adherence. Patient results are compared against this database, helping physicians assess whether patients are taking their pain medications correctly. Medication monitoring through urine drug testing helps physicians make more informed clinical decisions and manage the risks and complexities associated with prescribing pain medications. Ameritox is headquartered in Baltimore, Md. with laboratory facilities in Midland, Texas and Greensboro, N.C. Ameritox can be found online at www.ameritox.com, on Twitter @Ameritox, or on Facebook at facebook.com/ameritox.