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Latuda & Suboxone

Peter Manza, PhD profile image
By Peter Manza, PhD • Updated Sep 18, 2023 • 5 cited sources

Latuda and Suboxone can have some interactions that need to be considered before the medications are taken together.

Some patients may benefit enough from taking both medications that it is worth the potential risk of combining them, as long as the medications are taken carefully and only as prescribed. This decision should be made by the prescribing physician along with the patient. 

What Is Latuda?

Latuda is a mood-stabilizing medication that is prescribed to treat schizophrenia, bipolar depression and other mental health conditions.[1] It is known generically as lurasidone.

The medication is an antipsychotic that works by balancing levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain. In research studies, people with bipolar disorder who take Latuda show improvement in overall quality of life and ability to function well.[2]

Latuda & Suboxone Interactions

Suboxone (brand name for a medication that is the combination of the drugs buprenorphine and naloxone) can have a number of interactions that are important to understand before taking it at the same time as Latuda.[3]

Both drugs can affect the central nervous system and cause a degree of drowsiness (CNS). The buprenorphine in Suboxone can increase the CNS depressant effect of Latuda. This can increase the risk for drowsiness, sedation, and, in severe cases, respiratory depression.

There have been a few other examples of side effects occurring as a result of co-administration of Latuda and Suboxone at the same time. Both medications can cause some urinary retention, which may worsen if used together. A 2018 study noted that a patient developed acute urinary retention (AUR) after taking Suboxone, lurasidone and trazodone together.[4] 

While these outcomes are very rare, they are still possible. This is why it is important to communicate with your doctor openly about what medications you are taking and any side effects you experience. 

Can Latuda & Suboxone Be Taken Together?

Yes, it is safe to take Latuda and Suboxone together. They are often taken together without consequence. 

As explained above, certain individuals may experience side effects that can range from mild (like some urinary retention) to more severe (like respiratory depression). If a person taking both medications experiences serious side effects, they should contact their doctor as soon as possible. 

The FDA’s Stance on the Combination

The FDA’s present stance on taking Latuda and similar drugs with Suboxone is that doctors and patients need to weigh the risks and benefits of taking the drugs together.[5] Both drugs may need to be taken on a long-term basis, and both can treat serious health issues.

It may be worth a patient taking a potentially risky combination of medications in some circumstances if it helps the patient overcome OUD while simultaneously treating a serious mental health condition, such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. 

Risk Assessment & Important Considerations

No two individuals are the same. A patient and doctor may feel that the benefits of taking Latuda and Suboxone at the same time are worth the risks, and generally, it is safe to do so. Others may prefer to be cautious and try a different treatment for OUD if they are on Latuda. At the end of the day, the patient always has the autonomy to decide what is best for their own body with the guidance of their doctor.

By Peter Manza, PhD

Peter Manza, PhD received his BA in Psychology and Biology from the University of Rochester and his PhD in Integrative Neuroscience at Stony Brook University. He is currently working as a research scientist in Washington, DC. His research focuses on the role ... Read More

  1. Lurasidone (Latuda). National Alliance on Mental Health. February 2020. Accessed March 2023.
  2. About Latuda. Accessed March 2023.
  3. Buprenorphine Sublingual and Buccal (Opioid Dependence). National Library of Medicine. January 2022. Accessed March 2023.
  4. An Additive Mix? Acute Urinary Retention in a Patient With Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Treated With Suboxone, Lurasidone, and Trazodone. Focus. July 2018. Accessed March 2023.
  5. FDA Urges Caution About Withholding Opioid Addiction Medications From Patients Taking Benzodiazepines or CNS Depressants: Careful Medication Management Can Reduce Risks. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. September 2017. Accessed March 2023.
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