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Omidian A, Mastropietro DJ and Omidian H
This review aimed to investigate the abuse patterns of common prescription opioids currently on the market by collecting large-scale surveys of different abuser populations. Furthermore, we aimed to analyze the efficacy and properties of currently implemented abuse-deterrent formulations (ADF) for these compounds. Our investigation showed that while oxycodone and oxymorphone are primarily abused by oral ingestion and insufflations, respectively, their ADF products (reformulated OxyContin and Opana ER) show some encouraging results to deter their abuse. Tapentadol is not popular amongst abuser populations, its ADF are difficult to tamper with, and it does not produce significantly desirable effects in noncompliant patients when compared to other opioids. Hydromorphone is predominantly abused by injection, and any effective abuse-deterrent strategy must specifically prioritize and target this route. Current formulations have successfully conferred aversive properties onto the drug in the event of preparation for injection, yet overall rates of hydromorphone abuse remain high, suggesting that more innovative steps need to be taken. Despite novel deterrent technologies that collectively offer deterrence by insufflations, injection and co-ingestion with alcohol, more priority needs to be given to deterring the most common and accessible route of abuse, i.e., oral ingestion of multiple doses.