Does Buprenorphine Maintenance Cause Dangerous Side Effects?

Does Buprenorphine Maintenance Cause Side Effects?

Buprenorphine is now considered a leading medication prescribed to help people addicted to opioid drugs such as heroin; prescription pain killers like oxycontin, Percocet, Vicodin, and others; or Fentanyl or other synthetic (manufactured) opioid drugs. Buprenorphine is prescribed to help a person get through opioid addiction detox symptoms and to help them maintain abstinence long term.

The side effects that are reported from using Buprenorphine are usually mild but can become severe. It is never advised to take Buprenorphine without a doctor supervising the doses and an individual’s health while on it.

Does Buprenorphine Maintenance Cause Side Effects?What is the Difference Between Suboxone and Buprenorphine

Many people are misled about the differences between Suboxone and Buprenorphine.  Suboxone contains Naltrexone and Buprenorphine.

Naltrexone is the ingredient inside of Suboxone that blocks the effects of opioid drugs. What that means is when someone is trying to get over their addiction to opioids. They may relapse, and if they try and use heroin or another opioid, the Naltrexone will block the effects.

Is Naltrexone Always in Buprenorphine?

Combining Buprenorphine and Naltrexone as Suboxone has proven to be the most effective way for a person addicted to opioids to end their addiction. The other medication that contains Buprenorphine is Subutex. It does not contain Naltrexone.

Subutex has also had tremendous amounts of success, but it does not promote abstinence as well. Also, buprenorphine may slow the central nervous system and cause heartbeat irregularities.

Side Effects from Taking Buprenorphine

The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances in science and health list the various adverse side effects that have been documented:

Buprenorphine exerts some anticholinergic-like effects and may cause central nervous system depression, hypotension, QT prolongation, and lowering of the seizure threshold. Other side effects of Buprenorphine include nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, dizziness, headache, memory loss, sweating, dry mouth, miosis, orthostatic hypotension, sexual side effects, and urinary retention. (NCBI)

NIDA also explains the benefits of using Buprenorphine and how it is an effective medication for helping a person get clean from their addiction to heroin or other opioids.

The use of Buprenorphine has demonstrated to be more effective than detoxification in improving outcomes in patients with opioid dependence. When compared to methadone: Buprenorphine is safer even at high doses; there is less risk of abuse and diversion; it is easier to taper; there is less stigma associated with Buprenorphine than methadone.

Where Can I Get Buprenorphine Medication?

To be prescribed Buprenorphine, a person must attend a treatment program that provides opioid replacement drugs, referred to as Medication-assisted treatments, or MAT.  Buprenorphine is also available as a MAT through licensed medical doctors who have been registered with the Drug Enforcement Agency to prescribe Buprenorphine for opioid addiction detox and recovery. In addition, most quality drug addiction treatment centers now offer Buprenorphine as part of their treatment programs. Anyone addicted to heroin or Fentanyl or prescription painkillers needs professional help right away to get off the drugs.

More About Buprenorphine Addiction Treatment

Without treatment that utilizes Buprenorphine as a MAT for detox along with counseling, evidence-based forms of therapy, group counseling, and other advanced therapy treatments, it will be challenging for anyone to remain clean from opioid drugs. Opioid addiction is one of the most difficult to give up and to stay clean. Medical experts oversee the opioid treatment centers we recommend. They are licensed to prescribe Buprenorphine as Suboxone or as Subutex. The centers we support have programs available for men, women, and young adults.

If you or a loved one have an addiction to opioids, there is hope as Alcohol Drugs Rehabs is here to help, give us a call as we are available around the clock and all calls are completely confidential. Let us help you on the path to sobriety.

Medically Reviewed
All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.

Michael Kulick

Medical Reviewer
M.S.W., MCAP, RCSWI

Michael was born and raised in South Florida, where he completed his undergraduate and graduate education at FAU and Barry University, culminating in a Master’s Degree in Social Work, with Honors. Since accomplishing his academic goals, Michael has held a variety of clinical and administrative positions ranging from Primary Clinical Therapist, Clinical Coordinator, Program Director, Clinical Director, Director of Operations and Chief Executive Officer.

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