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Learning from Anna Nicole Smith – Methadone Detox: Preventing Tragedy and Saving Lives

Back in 2007, when Anna Nicole Smith died of a drug overdose in Florida, methadone was reported to be part of the bizarre and deadly cocktail of prescription drugs that killed her. That same year, methadone was named the fastest growing killer of all the narcotics, legal and illegal, in America.

Now, three years later, we see in the news that a jury in California is deciding whether Anna Nicole’s two doctors and her lawyer-boyfriend are guilty of multiple felonies. The jury is hearing evidence of conspiracy to furnish prescription drugs to an addict, thereby contributing to Smith’s accidental overdose death.

Last month, a judge dismissed charges against the boyfriend, Howard K. Stern, 41, that he fraudulently obtained a methadone prescription for Anna Nicole. Numerous other charges against Stern remain, however.

The Anna Nicole tragedy played out in the media for weeks, with all sorts of sordid details emerging — a former Playboy model, now a drug-addled has-been, is killed by prescription drugs; she leaves an orphaned infant daughter, and questions are swirling about the true identity of the infant’s father; several pill-pushing doctors are investigated, including a Beverly Hills psychiatrist; Stern says he is the father of the infant, but a former lover emerges from obscurity to claim paternity, followed by an unknown middle-aged acquaintance who makes the same claim. A DNA test proves it’s the former lover.

It was both a circus and a tragedy at the same time. At Novus Medical Detox Center, where we help people deal with substance abuse every day, we cannot help but think of the tragic aspects of such stories as Anna Nicole’s.

In Florida, methadone detox programs save lives every day, and the Novus methadone detox protocols are among the most effective anywhere. If circumstances had somehow been different, we might have helped save Anna Nicole’s life!

Methadone detox for mom might have saved an infant’s life

Whenever methadone is in the news, it is usually accompanied by sordid, and often tragic, circumstances. And dozens of methadone tragedies are reported every week.

For example, while the jury in California debates the sordid death of Anna Nicole Smith, another trial is underway in Reno, Nevada. For the first time ever in Reno, a person has been accused of murder through methadone poisoning, and the case has gone to trial.

On Feb. 23, 2009, 3-year-old Jessika Haberle went for a nap, and then stopped breathing. The Sparks, NV, infant subsequently died without regaining consciousness. Toxicology tests performed on the infant found a lethal amount of methadone in her system. In fact, tests found more than nine times the amount that would kill an adult.

Baby Jessika’s mother, Tracie Schuler, 39, is accused of leaving her liquid methadone replacement prescription where her daughter could find and ingest it. Or, she is alternately accused of intentionally sedating the girl with the methadone. It’s up to the jury to decide how it happened. Either way, Tracie Schuler will be found guilty of murder through some sort of negligence, to which she has already confessed.

This is a tragedy that could have been avoided had Tracie Schuler entered a timely methadone detox program, rather than continue taking the replacement methadone for her heroin addiction. A methadone/heroin detox program might have been all that was needed to turn the whole situation around.

One fact that cannot be denied, but which likely will never be raised at the trial, is the greater tragedy of methadone replacement programs themselves. Everywhere we look, methadone replacement programs continue addictions, rather than treat and end addictions. Such is the nature of the so-called methadone “therapy” which is no therapy at all, but a sentence to a lifetime of addiction.

A methadone detox program that effectively and safely deals with the problem of methadone addiction can end the nightmare. But what about the heroin addiction in the first place? Why sentence someone to methadone addiction on top of a heroin addiction, when heroin detox and rehabilitation can achieve a drug-free life to start with?

Florida methadone detox at Novus can end the living nightmare

Methadone detox in Florida is among the most sought-after drug treatments because of the growing number of heroin and other opiate addicts being placed on methadone replacement programs.

But also in Florida, methadone detox programs can be hard to find for victims of methadone replacement programs. The daily methadone dosages for such people can reach levels considered untreatable by many detox centers. They lack the technology, experience and know-how to treat high-dose methadone addictions.

People trapped in the living nightmare of addiction in methadone replacement programs can reach dosage levels that are refused by most detox centers across the country. Some centers that do accept higher dose addicts do not provide treatment protocols that assure health and safety, never mind any assurance that the program will be physically and mentally bearable, let alone successful.

At Novus, even high-dose methadone addictions are treated successfully and routinely.

The Novus Florida methadone detox is medically supervised 24/7 by experts through every step of the detox. Novus methadone detox protocols keep you comfortable, and are based on your individual metabolism and health requirements. Nutritional protocols are applied to rebuild your body, meaning that you leave Novus — most within two weeks — safely withdrawn from methadone, not taking any new drugs, and a whole lot healthier than when they arrived.


We develop an individualized medical detox program specifically for each of our patients, which means no recovery will look the same. Our delicious food, nutritional IVs and supplements, and specialized detox protocols are all designed to quicken the healing process. We understand that various addictions present a number of issues for the human body, so we create our IVs and diets to fit the needs of specific withdrawal symptoms.

Our process is all about you, which is why we have private and shared rooms available for our residents. Each room is outfitted with a TV, telephone, and access to the internet. We also provide educational classes that will show you how the drug or alcohol of your choice affects your body. We believe that to effectively fight off your withdrawal symptoms, it is important to know what you are fighting against and what to be prepared for.

To learn more about how we can help you,
call (855) 464-8550 today!

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Success Stories

For a Sustainable Sobriety™
  • Methadone Detox Successes - Graphic Artist (Methadone)

    Mostly every person was very supportive and more than willing to help me with anything. I detoxed from 65 mg of methadone and I ate everyday. That is ...

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  • Methadone Detox Successes - Self-Employed (Methadone)

    Novus is the best place I could have ended this hellish journey. I want to acknowledge all of the Novus staff! Can I please come back and work here! I ...

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  • Methadone Detox Successes - Student (Methadone)

    Novus has helped me in a way that I thought was impossible . My stay was very comfortable and time flew. The food was top notch and the company and ...

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Blog Articles

For a Sustainable Sobriety™
  • Do Only Addicts Go To Medical Detox?

    Most people assume that the only types of people who go to medical detox are drug addicts. When many people think of drug addicts, they get visions of ...

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  • A Drug Detox Program Can Overcome Prescription Painkiller Addiction and Dependency If Done Quickly and Thoroughly

    Spencer McIllwain, promising football player and all 'round good citizen of Oklahoma died nearly four months ago from an overdose of methadone . His ...

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  • Methadone Detox Successes - Graphic Artist (Methadone)

    Mostly every person was very supportive and more than willing to help me with anything. I detoxed from 65 mg of methadone and I ate everyday. That is ...

    Continue Reading

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