Increasingly, PROMETA has come under close scrutiny, with several individuals and experts claming that the treatment does not achieve all that it claims to do, although there have been numerous testimonials testifying to the efficacy of the system of treatment for addiction. In one patient's own words, "I had tried everything, and nothing worked for me. But PROMETA has!" (Addiction Medicine, 2006) in the words of Chicago based addiction specialist David Ostrow, there had been attempts to create hype, to an extent that was not essential, in the publicity associated with this new treatment PROMETA. In fact, he reiterated, there was very little evidence presented by the promoters of the product, to show that this indeed was a form of treatment that would work for addicts and alcoholics, in maintaining their abstinence over prolonged periods of time, and in acting against the chemicals that promote the addictions in the individual. He said, "These kinds of treatments have come and gone like garden weeds in the field of addiction." (Addiction Medicine, 2006)
Other experts too voice similar opinions, that PROMETA was presented to the unwary public without first demonstrating the fact that the treatment would prove to be useful for methamphetamine and alcohol addicts. How much use would a 'drug cocktail' do for an individual who is already in the grip of an addiction to some substance or the other, asked other experts of the revolutionary PROMETA treatment targeted at handling the chemical imbalances of the brain caused and brought about by the addiction. The reason is that the treatment has not been provided approval by the Food and Drug Administration as that of an addiction therapy, and neither has the treatment been subjected to extensive scientific research and testing. All the same, those patients who have tried and tested the PROMETA treatment vouch for its efficacy in handling their addiction in such a way that it reduced their cravings at the very outset, after which it treated their addiction, after which it helped them keep off the drugs. However, in the words of Alex Stalcup, an expert on methamphetamine addiction, it is more of a marketing scheme than a real de addiction treatment for addicts and alcoholics, while Dr. Matthew Torrington, had this to say, "People are dying (from drug abuse) and this (treatment) seems to be making a dramatic difference." (Addiction Medicine, 2006) Although this treatment has not been tested properly yet, it is being aggressively promoted, felt another expert, who disagreed with and opposed the very act of introducing such treatments without conducting proper clinical trials first. (Addiction Medicine, 2006)
This is how PROMETA works. The Pierce County Alliance announced that forty long-term methamphetamine and cocaine users would be enrolled in a pilot program to treat substance dependence, entitled PROMETA. The treatment as such would consist of two cycles. The first cycle would include a daily infusion of specially formulated PROMETA medication over a period of three days. This might be immediately being followed afterwards with the second treatment level of daily regular infusions of some similar types of medications over two consecutive days. The second type of treatment cycle might start about 21 days soon after the initial day of the first level of infusion. When the addicts were treated with the two levels of treatment over the specific duration of time, tests showed that about 92.5% of the patients who were part of the program were drug free, and about 98% of the random weekly urine evaluations of the treated patients revealed the fact that they remained free of drug abuse. (Shelton, 2007)
This was a feat hitherto not achieved by any other drug de addiction program, stated experts and personnel belonging to the PROMETA treatment program. Those patients who had managed to successfully complete both their infusion treatment program as well as the following treatment regimens were declared by their case manager as being 'much improved', and this meant that these patients would no longer have to suffer the consequences of being addicted to drugs, alcohol or to methamphetamines. In the same manner, those patients who took part in the PROMETA program, and who had not had the bitter experience of a relapse or even over one relapse at the time of the vital period of 60 days after completing of their treatment, and also those who had not been incarcerated by the law for any type of drug related offence during the same period could be considered successful at the treatment, stated a spokesman for the treatment program, PROMETA. (Shelton, 2007)
Although evidence has been able to prove otherwise, there have been large scale protests stating that PROMETA was not tested properly before it was tried out on unsuspecting patients. John Ladenburg, the County Executive for PROMETA defended his company against false allegations and accusations, and in his opinion, funding for the treatment program had been unnecessarily suspended, despite all the evidence that the company was willing to display regarding its efficacy and effectiveness in dealing with and curing drug addicts of their addiction and other cravings. (Wickert, 2007)
Termed a 'costly drug cocktail', PROMETA has been maligned by the media, and by rival companies, and that the approval granted to the cocktail of drugs by the Food and Drugs Administration was for the treatment of other disorders, but not for drug addiction. Furthermore, drug rehabilitation comes at a great cost, and PROMETA is no exception, the only difference lying in the fact that while insurance handles certain drug addiction treatment costs, the costs of PROMETA would not come under this branch. However, those patients who have signed up for PROMETA have reported that their cravings were considerably reduced after the treatment, and that they felt infinitely more clearly headed than before. UCLA had undertaken a research to get a true and clear picture of the benefits of PROMETA, and the results are expected some time the next year, say experts. (Shelton, 2007) if one had a relative or a close friend who was suffering from an unbreakable heroin habit or from alcoholism, perhaps one would not hesitate to try out this novel contemporary and dynamic method of treatment, which uses a simple method to break the cravings and thereby the addiction that the addict is slave to. Most users of the treatment report that they felt a reduction in craving almost overnight, and it is said that PROMETA sells hope to the desperate.
If one had a son who was about to kill himself because of his drug addiction, wouldn't one resort to desperate measures to save him? If so, then PROMETA would probably be the best bet; it would cure the addict safely, and within a very short period of time, reduce his cravings, and make sure that he remains free of his cravings for a long time to come, and also that he does not relapse. What more could one ask for?
Addiction Medicine. (2006, April) "Dr. Raymond Johnson presents preliminary outcomes data on PROMETA addiction treatment" Drug Week, 39. Retrieved January 14, 2008, from Research Library database. (Document ID: 1022559421).
Gracer, Richard I; Gracer, Richard I. (2007) "A new prescription for addiction, Subutex,
PROMETA: Subutex, Prometa, Vivitrol, and Campral..." Gracer Medical Group.
Hythiam, Inc. (2007, August) "Hythiam Announces Second Quarter Results" Drug Week, 315.
Retrieved January 14, 2008, from Research Library database. (Document ID: 1320381231).
Kapralos, Krista J. (2006, December 11). "Tulalips to offer experimental meth treatment" the Herald, p. 1. Retrieved January 14, 2008, from ProQuest Newsstand database. (Document ID: 1177697041).