Pharmacopsychiatry 2024; 57(02): 88-89
DOI: 10.1055/s-0044-1779565
Abstracts │ XVth Symposium of the Task Force Therapeutic Drug Monitoring of the AGNP
Lecture Abstracts

Therapeutic drug monitoring in the opioid substitution treatment

M. Kuzin
1   Clienia Schloessli, Private Psychiatric Hospital and Academic Teaching Hospital of the University of Zurich, Oetwil am See / Zurich, Switzerland
2   Department of Basic and Clinical Sciences at the Medical School, University of Nicosia, Nicosia, Cyprus
› Author Affiliations

Opioid substitution treatment (OST) is an evidence-based intervention and different substances are available nowadays as a treatment option. Methadone, a long-acting synthetic opioid, is available e.g. for more than 40 years and was the first widely used opioid for the treatment of heroin dependence, e.g. in Switzerland since 1975. The Swiss Federal Office of Public Health does not provide any information on the therapeutic reference range in its summary of medical recommendations "Substitution-assisted treatment of opioid dependence". The German S3 guidelines "Medication-related disorders" mentions Therapeutic Drug Monitoring (TDM) and refers to the current "Consensus Guidelines for Therapeutic Drug Monitoring in Neuropsychopharmacology: Update 2017" in which the recommendation levels for the use of TDM are listed. The level of recommendation in the OST differs from substance to substance and is e.g. for methadone (level 2: recommended) the same as for the atypical antipsychotics aripiprazole or risperidone. In fact, TDM for OST still is insufficiently integrated into clinical routine. The new S3 guideline “Opioid-related Disorders” is expected this year and is registered by the Association of the Scientific Medical Societies in Germany (AWMF).

Our pharmacotherapeutic approaches tend to be schematic, which means that individual patient differences (e.g. regarding gender, body weight, liver and kidney function etc.) are not considered in treatment processes. TDM is a precision medicine tool that can enable clinicians to optimize and individualize ongoing treatment with psychotropic medications, including pharmacotherapy for substance use disorders.

Publication History

Article published online:
12 March 2024

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