Opioid Addiction – Current Treatment – Detailed, Expanded Analysis (US)

Opioid addiction is a chronic disease, generally driven by a strong and irresistible urge or craving for the intake of opioid drugs and an inability to stop despite negative consequences to health, personal, and professional well-being. Maintenance treatments for opioid addiction are either substitution therapies or abstinence therapies. Substitution therapies (i.e., methadone, buprenorphine, and buprenorphine / naloxone combination) are opioid agonists or partial agonists, while abstinence therapies (i.e., naltrexone) are opioid antagonists. With the U.S. market withdrawal of Probuphine (buprenorphine implant) and Bunavail (buprenorphine / naloxone buccal film) in 2020 by their respective marketers owing to commercial decisions, few brands remain for the management of opioid addiction. Nevertheless, the multiple shortcomings of current treatments (e.g., misuse and diversion potential, relapse rates) provide opportunities for drug developers, and it is valuable for drug marketers and developers to understand physicians’ prescribing behavior, the factors influencing treatment decisions, and expected changes in prescribing patterns in the coming year in opioid addiction.


  • What factors mainly influence physicians’ treatment decisions in opioid addiction?
  • What patient shares do key therapies and brands garner by line of therapy? What factors drive switching to and from branded agents (e.g., Sublocade [Indivior], Zubsolv [Orexo], Vivitrol [Alkermes])?
  • What are the product-level compliance and persistency rates with current opioid addiction therapies?
  • How has opioid addiction disease management changed in the past year, and what changes do physicians expect in their prescribing of these drugs in one year?


Current Treatment: Physician Insights provides physician insights on treatment dynamics, prescribing behavior, and drivers of brand use so that marketers can create specific messaging around these treatment dynamics to more effectively increase or defend their market position.

Markets covered: United States.

Primary research: Survey of 102 psychiatrists in the United States..

Key companies: Alkermes, Indivior, Orexo.

Key drugs: Methadone, Sublocade, Suboxone Film, Vivitrol, Zubsolv, buprenorphine / naloxone sublingual film (generic), buprenorphine sublingual tablet (generic), naltrexone (generic).

Key insights provided:

  • Factors influencing disease management and treatment decisions.
  • Drivers and constraints of treatment selection.
  • Physician-reported treatment practices and brand-level patient shares.
  • Rationale for changes in treatment approach.
  • Physician insight on persistency and compliance.
  • Physician-reported recent / anticipated changes in brand usage or treatment approach.

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