People from Ireland who are suffering with serious alcohol problems are travelling to the UK to be fitted with a costly ‘drink pellet’. The pellets are inserted into the lower abdomen and can cost more than €1,000 even though the effects wear off after just three months.
They do block the ‘buzz factor’ people get from drinking alcohol however which is why it has become such a popular method for people trying to beat addiction. The treatment works by releasing a controlled amount of the drug, Naltrexone into the bloodstream. This suppresses the ‘high’ that heavy drinkers normally get from alcohol.
Commercial Director of the Abstinence Centre in London, Brendan Quinn emphasised that although this pellet is a great way to help beat addiction, it’s not a cure and ongoing psychological support, as well as follow-up consultations are crucial.
He said that the implant has a success rate of between 30 and 40 percent and that patients can ‘top up’ with a new pellet every three months if required, up to a maximum of 18 months. The treatments is already widely available privately in the UK, America, Russia and Australia and is scheduled to go on sale in Ireland for the first time in July of this year.
Dr Hugh Gallagher will be administering the pellets to private patients in Ireland and commented:
“The people seeking this procedure have a high dependency on alcohol so it’s a very good aid in treating addiction. Patients will also be assessed for any physical and mental problems they may have from their years of heavy drinking. Ideally, patients will get four implants every three months but that will vary depending on the patient.”
If you think that you or someone you know may have a problem with alcohol, please feel free to visit our Alcohol Addiction Treatment and Rehabilitation Page for more information. You can also contact us for help or information