An Increasingly Popular Opiate Treatment Drug
Suboxone is a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone, a drug used to reverse the effects of potentially fatal opioid overdose. The drug has proven enormously effective in the treatment of opioid addiction; but it has also proven to be highly addictive. Suboxone comes in either a tablet or dissolvable film and is among the first drugs approved for regular physician dispensation under the Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000. Since its approval, the drug has exploded in popularity. In 2013 alone, over nine million prescriptions were filled for Suboxone and other buprenorphine-based medications.
Clinical Benefits of Suboxone
Suboxone contains buprenorphine which is an opioid antagonist meant to produce the same effects as other opiates, though less severe, in an effort to diminish cravings and withdrawal. Suboxone essentially recreates a less intense opioid high while relieving the lingering pain of withdrawal for a period of approximately 24 hours. Some studies have revealed a long-term abstinence rate of 40-60 percent for patients that have gone through Suboxone treatment. Given the incredibly high relapse rate of opioid dependence, these are welcome numbers for the addiction treatment community. Suboxone is not a substitute for traditional treatment and should be administered as part of a comprehensive care program.