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What is the transition from Subutex (Bup-Mono) to Suboxone (Bup/Nal) like?

You will likely feel no difference when transitioning from buprenorphine-monotherapy (Subutex) to buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone). Your medical provider will simply replace the dose of Subutex with Suboxone (containing the same amount of buprenorphine).

So, why no difference? Naloxone is not absorbed into your bloodstream when taken as prescribed (sublingually). Naloxone is included in Suboxone to prevent patients from injecting or inhaling it, and thus, you’ll only notice a difference in buprenorphine-monotherapy (Subutex) and buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) if you’re using it improperly.

Rebekah L. Rollston, MD, MPH

Dr. Rollston is a Family Medicine Physician at Cambridge Health Alliance, Affiliate Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Primary Care Blog, and Founder of Doctors For A Healthy US, LLC. She earned her Medical Degree from East Tennessee State University Quillen College of Medicine and her Master of Public Health from The George Washington University. Her professional interests focus on social influencers of health & health disparities, addiction medicine, sexual & reproductive health, homelessness & supportive housing, and rural health.

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