Suboxone and Subutex, both of which were approved by the FDA in 2002, are drugs developed for the treatment of opiate addiction. Subutex is during detox, whereas Suboxone can be used long-term. Suboxone has an implant that can be used instead of films.
What is Subutex?
Buprenorphine is used to treat dependence/addiction to opioids. Buprenorphine belongs to a class of drugs called mixed opioid agonist-antagonists. It helps prevent withdrawal symptoms caused by stopping other opioids. It is used as part of a complete treatment program for drug abuse (such as compliance monitoring, counseling, behavioral contract, and lifestyle changes).
When is Subutex used?
Subutex is used in drug detox or addiction treatment center. At treatment facilities, Subutex is administered under the supervision of medical staff. Suboxone, though, can be taken at home.
The goal is to slowly lower the level of opioids in the patient’s system so that they don’t experience the overwhelming withdrawals that lead to relapse.
Why do doctors prescribe Subutex if it has no opioid blocker?
Subutex is the best medication to use when beginning treatment for opioid addiction. This is when withdrawal symptoms are at their worst.
The fact that Subutex does not contain the opioid blocker Naloxone is actually an advantage in the early stages of treatment because the patient can begin taking the medication as soon as they enter treatment.
Suboxone, on the other hand, is not recommended for people who are still using opioid drugs in their system. Taking Suboxone before opioids have cleared the system can make withdrawal symptoms worse. This is known as precipitated withdrawal.
Why do doctors prescribe Subutex and Suboxone?
Once we address the physical symptoms, the patient can fully engage in their recovery by attending therapy, going to meetings and forming connections with other sober people.
Can a doctor prescribe Suboxone?
Yes, a doctor must prescribe the medication. It is not sold over the counter.
Is Suboxone more expensive than Subutex?
The retail price of Suboxone is about $200 for (30 day supply) and Subutex is $160 for 30 days. Suboxone offers this coupon to significantly reduce the price per month.
You can’t substitute Subutex for Suboxone just because it’s cheaper. Unlike Suboxone, Subutex would rarely be given at-home or long-term.
Are Subutex and Suboxone dangerous?
Not when taken as directed. While there is potential for abuse, Suboxone and Subutex are only partial opioids. That means there is a ceiling effect.
It’s a way to get more people help and meet the struggling person where they are at.
Can you become addicted to Suboxone or Subutex?
It is possible to get addicted to Suboxone or Subutex, but it’s not common.
Is Suboxone safer than Subutex?
Suboxone, a formulation of buprenorphine that includes naloxone, is safer to use than buprenorphine alone. Suboxone has less risk of abuse through injection because of its extra ingredient, naloxone. Naloxone is not active when Suboxone is taken under the tongue as directed. When taken as directed, Suboxone can actively stimulate opioid receptors and prevent withdrawal symptoms. However, if Suboxone is abused and injected to attempt a bigger “high,” naloxone becomes active and blocks the body’s opioid receptors, causing withdrawal symptoms. This helps decrease the risk that Suboxone might be abused.
Do Suboxone and Subutex work for opioid addiction?
Yes! Both Suboxone and Subutex are considered effective treatment options for opioid use disorders. It does need to be said, though, that they are not perfect. Some people who take Suboxone continue abusing opioids or other medications.
Most treatment success stories come from a holistic approach that includes appropriate individual and group therapies, not medication alone.
Does JourneyPure offer Suboxone?
Yes. JourneyPure has Suboxone Clinics in Tennessee and Kentucky in the following locations:
- Lexington Suboxone Clinic (KY)
- Louisville Suboxone Clinic (KY)
- Paducah Suboxone Clinic (KY)
- Bowling Green Suboxone Clinic (KY)
- Elizabethtown Suboxone Clinic (KY)
- Knoxville Suboxone Clinic (TN)
JourneyPure.com doctors follow rigorous sourcing guidelines and cite only trustworthy sources of information, including peer-reviewed journals, count records, academic organizations, highly regarded nonprofit organizations, government reports and their own expertise with decades in the fields and their own personal recovery.
Buresh, M. (n.d.). Office-Based Buprenorphine: Tips and Tricks. John Hopkins School of Medicine. Retrieved 7/15/21, from http://www.mddcsam.org/images/2018-conference-resources/3-Buresh_MDDCSAM-OBOT-09_22_18.pdf
National Center for Biotechnology Information (2021). PubChem Compound Summary for CID 644073, Buprenorphine. Retrieved July 19, 2021 from https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Buprenorphine.
NIDA. 2021, April 13. How do medications to treat opioid use disorder work?. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/medications-to-treat-opioid-addiction/how-do-medications-to-treat-opioid-addiction-work on 2021, July 19
NIDA. 2021, April 13. How effective are medications to treat opioid use disorder?. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/medications-to-treat-opioid-addiction/efficacy-medications-opioid-use-disorder on 2021, July 19
(2021, April 30). Information about Naloxone. FDA.Gov; US Food & Drug Administration. https://www.fda.gov/drugs/postmarket-drug-safety-information-patients-and-providers/information-about-naloxone
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