The good news is that the FDA has given approval for Ziconotide, a venom derived from ocean snails, and marketed under the tradename, Prialt. It is not an opiate and cannot replace opiate pain medications. Its use can be stopped suddenly without experiencing withdrawal effects.
The bad news is that Prialt may cause serious mental symptoms and neurological problems, which may be permanent. It is not recommended for use by those with a psychosis. The risks include:
- Severe Psychiatric Symptoms or Neurological Impairment.
- Unconsciousness or Reduced Mental Alertness.
- Meningitis or Other Infections.
- Serious muscle damage.
- The most common side effects are: dizziness, nausea, confusion, headache, sleepiness, problems with vision, weakness, and pain.