CTV - Newsmaker: Dr. Joe Schwarcz on Oxycontin


As of last Thursday March 1, oxycontin is no longer manufactured in Canada. It's been replaced by a new drug called oxyneo which is supposed to be harder to abuse. Dr. Joe Schwarcz, the Director of the McGill Office for Science and Society says the problem with oxycontin was its time-release structure.

"Oxycodone is the active ingredient," said Dr. Schwarcz. "The idea was that you could take it every 12 hours and maintain a steady blood level. But clandestine chemists tend to be clever and they found ways to extract the oxycodone from the pill and much of the oxycodone ended up in people's veins instead of ending up taking away the pain."