What is the Correct Starting Dose for Methadone?
The right starting dose of methadone depends on why the methadone is prescribed and what medications the patient was on before the methadone. Generally speaking, the medical literature provides that patients who use methadone for pain, who have not been on an opiate continuously before starting methadone, may start at 2.5 mg. There are several medical articles that address the proper dose for a pain patient. For a patient who is dependent on opiates, if the patient is qualified for admission to the opiate program after a full workup, history and exam, the starting dose may be 5 mg or 10 mg or even higher. A doctor makes this decision after reviewing all the information about the patient’s past drug use, a physical exam, and other information about the patient's medical condition. Federal law prohibits an initial dose exceeding 30 mg.