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Buprenorphine, commercialized under the brand name Subetex, among others is a strong opioid that is used to treat opioid use disorder, acute pain, and chronic pain. It has proven itself to be efficient in the treatment of dependence/addiction to opioids. It is effective in preventing withdrawal symptoms caused by stopping other opioids. Subutex is used as part of a complete treatment program for drug abuse.

Uses of subutex

  • It is used to treat pain drug (opioid) addiction.
  • It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor for a better understanding.

What your should tell your doctor before taking subutex

  • Let your doctor know whether you have an allergy to buprenorphine or any other part of subutex.
  • If you have liver disease.
  • Let your doctor know whether or not you are suffering from lung or breathing problems like asthma, sleep apnea, high levels of carbon dioxide in the blood, stomach block or narrowing.
  • Let your doctor know if you are taking drugs like nalbuphine, Burtophanol, or Pentazocine.
  • Inform the doctor whether or not you have any family member living with a long QT on ECG.
  • Let your doctor know whether or not you are taking drugs to treat heartbeat like amiodarone, disopyramide, dofetilide, procainamide, quinidine, or sotalol.
  • Let the doctor know whether you are using Linezolid or methylene blue.
  • Subutex should not be consumed by breastfeeding mothers.
  • Let your doctor know whether or not you took drugs for depression or Parkinson’s disease for the past 14 days.

How to use subutex

Subutex can be used under the tongue, by injection, in the cheek, as an implant or as a skin patch. When treating opioid use disorder, the drug is typically started when withdrawal symptoms have begun and administered for the first 48 hours of treatment under direct observation of a medical heath care provider. When this drug is used, the maximum pain relief is generally experienced within an hour with effects going up to 24 hours. It is advisable to use subutex as directed by your doctor. Before using it, always make sure that you read all the information given to you. Avoid taking subutex together with other strong pain drugs. Likewise, do not use it together with a pain patch without talking to your doctor. It is important for those who regularly consume grapefruits or grape juice to talk with their doctors before using this drug. Withdrawal symptoms may develop in those who are addicted to narcotics. In administering the drug, place under tongue and let dissolve all the way. Avoid chewing, soaking, or swallowing tablet. Also, do not break the subutex tablet. It is recommended to take this drug at the same time every day. If you realize that you’ve missed a dose, take it as soon as you can. If you realize too late or close to the next dose, simply skip the missed dose. Never try to catchup with a missed dose by doubling the dosage. Always stick to the dose prescribed by your doctor.

Side effects of Subutex

Below are symptoms related to severe side effects worth calling the attention of your doctor:

  • Sweating a lot.
  • Signs of an allergic reaction.
  • Feeling nervous and excitable.
  • Fast, slow, or abnormal heartbeat.
  • Fever, chills, or sore throat.
  • Change in balance.
  • Mood changes.
  • Severe constipation or stomach pain. These may be signs of a severe bowel problem.
  • Extra muscle action or slow movement.
  • Swelling in the arms or legs.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
  • Trouble passing urine.
  • Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
  • Muscle or joint pain.
  • Trouble speaking.
  • Memory problems or loss.
  • Seizures.
  • Shakiness.
  • Slurred speech, stumbling, or feeling confused, very sleepy or dizzy, or drunk.
  • A severe and sometimes deadly problem referred to as serotonin syndrome may happen if you take Subutex with certain other drugs. Immediately call your doctor if you have agitation; change in balance; confusion; hallucinations; fever; fast or abnormal heartbeat; flushing; muscle twitching or stiffness; seizures; shivering or shaking; sweating a lot; severe diarrhea, upset stomach, or throwing up; or severe headache.
  • Not able to focus.
  • Chest pain or pressure or passing out.

All drugs do have their side effects. Although not everyone experience the side effects, they do occur on a few people. Below are some side effects for consuming subutex which if you experience any, you should discuss with the doctor:

  • Back pain.
  • Constipation.
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Feeling dizzy, sleepy, tired, or weak.
  • Headache.
  • Trouble sleeping.
  • Signs of a common cold.
  • Stomach pain or diarrhea.
  • Numbness or tingling in the mouth.
  • Dry mouth.


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