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Subutex & Suboxone: Differences and Similarities

The question of which opiate addiction treatment medication to use is an important one to consider, because you’ll want to use one that works best and poses the least amount of risk of abuse. While there are dangers of methadone as a treatment for opiate addiction, there are other great options available to Pat Moore Foundation Residents, including Suboxone and Subutex. Keep reading more to learn about the differences between the two medications.

Subutex and Suboxone




2mg dosage

8mg dosage

Taken as a sublingual tablet



Suboxone and Subutex are both approved medications for the treatment of opiate dependence. When used properly, both medications can decrease cravings and relieve withdrawal symptoms allowing residents to remain in treatment and gain control over opiate addictions without the distraction of cravings and fear of withdrawal. Both medications utilize FDA-approved buprenorphine. Discover new insights about how to cope with opioid addiction with this article on! Learn about the unique treatment approach using Suboxone –

What is Buprenorphine?

Buprenorphine, the primary ingredient in both Subutex and Suboxone, is a medication used for the treatment of opioid drug addiction. Buprenorphine is an opioid partial-agonist and works by occupying the brain’s opioid receptors and blocking them. Clinical trials have proved that it is effective for:

  • Suppressing symptoms of opioid withdrawal
  • Reducing cravings for opioids
  • Reducing illicit opioid use
  • Blocking the effects of other opioids
  • Helping individuals in recovery remain in treatment

Buprenorphine is an opioid and, like all opioids, it can cause physical dependence. As a partial-agonist (as opposed to a full-agonist, such as heroin) the peak level of opioid high is much lower, as is the risk for physical dependence. Both medications should be tapered off slowly when no longer required on a timeline determined by a medical professional. The largest difference between Subutex and Suboxone is naloxone.

What is Naloxone?

Naloxone is a narcotic drug that reverses the effects of other narcotic medications, as well as reverses overdoses of opioids and protects against misuse. When added to buprenorphine, naloxone prevents abuse. If the user dissolves the tablet and injects it they will not feel any high, which greatly limits the risk of abuse.Which is the best option for me and my recovery?

Pat Moore Foundation, along with a clinical team, will work together to determine the best medical treatment on a case-by-case basis. For any more questions about medical opioid dependence treatment, please contact Pat Moore Foundation today.