Is methadone related in any way to the “meth” that one sees in the news?

Absolutely not. Methadone is in no way related to “meth,” which is the nickname for methamphetamine. Methadone is a legal opioid produced by pharmaceutical companies for the relief of pain and for use in the treatment of opioid abuse. Methamphetamine – or “crystal meth” as it is commonly known – is a non-opioid, illegal stimulant and drug of addiction (i.e., “crank” or “speed”). It is typically manufactured in rural areas (or in other countries and imported illegally) in illegal “meth labs.” The effects of the two drugs could not be more different. In much the same way that hydrocortisone and hydrocodone have absolutely nothing in common beyond the prefix “hydro” in their name (the former is a topical ointment for allergic reactions and the latter is an opioid), methadone and methamphetamine have nothing in common beyond the first syllable in their names.

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