Suboxone strips are square and feature the Suboxone logo in blue and white. Generic versions are usually orange and either rectangular or square.
Suboxone is a brand name combination of buprenorphine and naloxone. Medications containing buprenorphine have greatly improved medication for addiction treatment (MAT).
There is also a pill form of Suboxone. Some formulas can also be taken buccally, or dissolved against the cheek. There are generic versions of Suboxone, along with buprenorphine-only film strips.
Suboxone is a lifesaving medication that has helped countless people overcome opioid use disorder (OUD). The combination of buprenorphine, a partial opioid agonist, and naloxone, an opioid antagonist, has helped people manage the detox phase of withdrawing from opioids rather than going “cold turkey,” which can lead to relapse faster. When taken over weeks, months, or years as a maintenance medication, it prevents craving, relapse, and risk of death by overdose.
This medication is most often prescribed as a film designed to dissolve under the tongue. Film strips enter the bloodstream faster than other types of medication, which might need to be digested, and this approach to medication is both easier to supervise and less likely to be abused or tampered with. This allows medicine to bind to the brain quickly, so you get relief fast.
This article can help you identify Suboxone film strips, along with generic versions of buprenorphine/naloxone medication.
There are two basic strengths for the brand name sublingual film with about a 4:1 ratio of buprenorphine to naloxone. Each strip contains 8 mg of buprenorphine and 2 mg of naloxone; 2 mg of buprenorphine has 0.5 mg of naloxone.
Film strips are square. They come individually packaged with the Suboxone logo clearly displayed in blue and white. The strips themselves are orange in color.
There are a few generic film strips containing a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone in roughly the same ratio as brand name Suboxone.
This brand-name film strip version of Subutex is placed on the cheek to dissolve rather than under the tongue. Belbuca is rectangular, white and yellow in color, and comes in 75 mcg, 150 mcg, 300 mcg, 450 mcg, 600 mcg, 750 mcg, and 900 mcg of buprenorphine. There are generic versions of this medication, which have a similar appearance.
The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves generic formulas of important brand name prescriptions when the copyright approval for the original formula runs out. While the pharmaceutical company retains patent protection for their specific formula, the active ingredients can be used for generic medications, which then go through an FDA approval process.
Most generic drugs work the same way as their brand-name counterparts, but they cost less or are more likely to receive health insurance coverage. The FDA tests generic medications to ensure they are similarly bioavailable as their brand name counterparts.
For example, if your physician prescribes a generic version of online Suboxone, you will still benefit from this buprenorphine/naloxone film strip, while potentially saving money, getting better access, or getting better insurance coverage. If your doctor prescribes Suboxone specifically, ask about generic alternatives that might be more available to you if you are concerned about finances or access at a local pharmacy.
Always take your medication as directed. Do not chew, swallow, move, or tamper with film strips while they are dissolving under your tongue or against your cheek.