How long does Subutex stay in your system?
Subutex is used in the treatment of addiction. It works as an opiate substitution therapy. It contains the medicine buprenorphine and has been used as a medication assisted treatment for drug addiction to stronger opiates/opioids like heroin, oxycodone, or hydrocodone.
But how is the drug absorbed in the system? How is Subutex metabolized or excreted? When do doctors or employers drug test for Subutex? For more details of Subutex absorption, metabolism, and its pharmacokinetics, … keep reading here. If you have any questions at the end of this article, please ask us through the comments section at the end of the page. We try to respond personally and promptly to all legitimate inquiries.
Main Subutex uses
Subutex is DEA approved for use in opiate/opioid addiction treatment; it is listed as a Schedule III controlled substance and is usually used under a doctor’s direct supervision. Subutex is also indicated for the treatment of opiate/opioid dependence and works best when used as a part of a structured treatment program which includes counseling, psychotherapy, behavioral and educational sessions and a good support system. How does it work?
Basically, the main ingredient in Subutex (buprenorphine) is an opioid partial agonist-antagonist and works by binding to receptors in the brain and the nervous system. In this way, it helps prevent withdrawal effects from harder drugs like heroin or morphine. Additionally, Subutex helps cuts cravings for stronger drugs. Another way to think of it is that buprenorphine works as a “substitute drug” for opioids, but the withdrawal from Subutex is far less intense than the symptoms opioid drugs produce when discontinued.
Subutex effects on the brain
No, Subutex does not cause euphoria. Instead, Subutex works as both a partial opioid receptor agonist and antagonist. It competes with other opioids like morphine and heroin for the µ receptors of the central nervous system. In this way, it can interfere with the effects of these stronger drugs. Still, Subutex is only a partial agonist and has a ceiling effect. The ceiling effects makes Subutex less likely to be abused, since after a person takes about 30 mg of the drug, taking more doesn’t have any euphoria-enhancing or pleasurable effects.
How do you take Subutex?
Before Subutex therapy can be initiated, a doctor should assess your general physical and psychological state, determine the degree or level of opiate/opioid dependence, identify what type of a narcotic you use, and determine the last time you used. Subutex should be started when signs of moderate withdrawal begin.
Subutex should be taken as directed by your doctor-by placing the pill under the tongue and waiting for it to dissolve; once a day at the same time of the day, so you won’t forget your dose. Subutex should be administered sublingually only and taking this medication in any manner or dose other than prescribed is considered abuse and may lead to numerous unwanted consequences.
Peak levels and half life of Suboxone
Subutex is available as 2mg and 8mg tablets for sublingual administration. During clinical trials, buprenorphine effects in the body appear rapidly after administration. The highest concentration that buprenorphine reaches in the blood, after which it declines, is achieved after about 90-100 minutes afteringestion.
The half-life of Subutex is defined as the period of time buprenorphine takes to be eliminated from the body or disintegrated by the body’s natural metabolic processes. Based on medical studies, buprenorphine has a a half-life that can range from 24 to 60 hours. The long half-life of burpenorphine from Subutex makes this medication very useful in treating withdrawal symptoms.
How long does Subutex stay in the body?
Typical urine drug tests that detect heroin, codeine, morphine and other derivatives are not used to detect Subutex. This is because these opiate drug testsare actually testing for a different metabolite than the metabolites created bybuprenorphine. In this way, Subutex will not come up positive on most opiate drug tests.
Instead, there is a specific buprenorphine urine drug test, but it’s not usually included on standard drug screen panels and most employees don’t test for it (although more and more employers are starting to test for it). If a buprenorphine drug test is done, the average detection time is about 72 hours. In urine drug tests, the detection window is 2-4 days, but may be 7-10 days for chronic users, even at typical doses.
Problems with Subutex?
If you think that you are misusing Subutex, that it has become a problem, or if you are experiencing any side effects from Subutex therapy, your first point of contact can be your doctor. Don’t hesitate to ask for help.
If you have something that you want to ask us, you can use the comments section below to contact us. We try to provide a prompt and personal answer to your questions or at least refer you to someone who can help.
Reference Sources: DailyMed: Suboxone-buprenorphine hydrochloride and naloxone hydrochloride film, soluble
MedlinePlus: Buprenorphine Sublingual
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