Opioid dependence and substitution therapy: thymoquinone as potential novel supplement therapy for better outcome for methadone maintenance therapy substitution therapy

Iran J Basic Med Sci. 2014 Dec;17(12):926-8.

Abstract

Methadone is widely being used for opioid substitution therapy. However, the administration of methadone to opioid dependent individual is frequently accompanied by withdrawal syndrome and chemical dependency develops. Other than that, it is also difficult to retain patients in the treatment programme making their retention rates are decreasing over time. This article is written to higlights the potential use of prophetic medicines, Nigella sativa, as a supplement for opioid dependent receiving methadone. It focuses on the potential role of N. sativa and its major active compound, Thymoquinone (TQ) as a calcium channel blocking agent to reduce withdrawal syndrome and opioid dependency.

Keywords: Calcium channel blocker; Methadone; Nigella sativa; Opioid dependence; Thymoquinone.