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Generic Suboxone

Suboxone is the high dosage form of Buprenorphine paired with Naloxone, a drug that counteracts opioid. It is utilized in the medication-assisted treatment and prescribed to treat addiction to opioid drugs.

History

Buprenorphine hydrochloride was produced in the 1980s in low doses by the manufacturer Reckitt and Colman as pain killers. They later discovered a high-dose formulation combined with Naloxone, this time named as Suboxone. In 2002, along with Subutex, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the United States of America approved it as a treatment for opioid addiction and have been primarily used for that indication since then.

The drug, compared to other opioid treatments like methadone, has proved itself to be more effective but many consumers ache of its high cost as only one manufacturer held the exclusive distribution of the said drug: Reckitt Benckiser. In 2009, the rights expired. In an attempt to fight for the rights, Reckitt appealed to FDA that producing pills and allowing other companies to make them places risks on children as they can easily get hold of the drugs and swallow them. Reckitt volunteered to stop selling the pills and then created the sublingual film, assuring FDA that this form is safer. The fight for the exclusivity in making the drugs revolved on one fact: sales. Reckitt himself stated that allowing other companies to sell generics will make the company lose up to 80% of its income from Suboxone.

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Either way, this paved way for new manufacturers to produce the generic version of the drug. In the first quarter of the year 2013, Amneal Pharmaceuticals and Actavis Pharma consecutively secured approval from FDA to produce Suboxone. Although Reckitt Benckiser has the rights to solely manufacture the sublingual film strip until the year 2022, consumers may now avail of the cheaper medications sold by the 2 other pharmaceutical companies.

Formulations

Due to its fast metabolic absorption, Suboxone cannot be taken orally and is only available in these forms:

  • 2 mg and 8 mg Sublingual Pills
  • 2 mg and 8 mg Sublingual Films
  • 8 mg IM injection Solution

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How it works

Suboxone works by the following pharmacologic action:

  1. Buprenorphine is a partial agonist that tricks the brain into thinking its craving has been satisfied as it binds to the opioid receptors although not all of them have received the drug. The "partial" action supplies the receptors with opioids without eliciting unwanted effects like euphoria and respiratory depression. It also sticks long with the brain receptors until such a time that a Òceiling effectÓ is formed with the continued use. No matter how many pills or films the patient will take, he/she will not be euphoric and therefore will not develop addiction.
  2. Naloxone, on the other hand, blocks the effects of opioids that relieve pain and produce euphoria. This, therefore, prevent craving for more of the drug. If the patient attempts to get high on the drug, crushing it or injecting it rapidly will rather produce uncomfortable withdrawal signs and symptoms.

Precautions

The patient has to explicitly follow the instructions given by the doctor in taking Suboxone. 30 minutes before taking a dosage, eating, drinking or smoking is not allowed as these may hinder the drugÕs action. In the use of sublingual film, a small amount of water just enough to moisten the mouth to facilitate absorption may be taken in. As much as possible, the use of injectible solutions is discouraged as the rapid action of naloxone will knock down "loosen" opioids in the brain and will cause adverse withdrawal syndrome. Also, consult your doctor when taking another drug as it may interact with Suboxone.

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Side Effects

Individuals taking Suboxone who might react to the drug may experience pain, nausea, stomach pain, constipation, headache and insomnia, loss of sensation and/or redness in the mouth. More serious drug reactions include allergic reactions like closing of the throat, hives, difficulty and/or slowness in breathing and swelling. Others may experience symptoms associated with liver problems like light-colored stools, dark-colored urine and jaundice.

The "lock" of the opioid addiction problem has been unlocked by the ÒkeyÓ found in the family of the selfsame drug, thanks to Science. If you wish to know more information and recent updates about Suboxone, kindly click on the links below:

Sources:

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20130225005607/en/Amneal-Pharmaceuticals-Receives-FDA-Approval-Generic-Suboxone%C2%AE
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/fda-approves-actavis-generic-163837488.html
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2013/feb/25/reckitt-heroin-replacement-generic-drugs
http://www.rxlist.com/suboxone-drug/consumer-uses.htm
http://www.thefix.com/content/finally-generic-suboxone-opiate-addicts91322
http://psychcentral.com/lib/2011/how-is-suboxone-treatment-different-than-drug-abuse/all/1/
http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Truth-About-The-Drug-Called---Suboxone!&id=661051
http://www.rxlist.com/suboxone-side-effects-drug-center.htm
http://www.drugs-forum.com/forum/showwiki.php?title=Buprenorphine
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buprenorphine

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What is Buprenorphine?
 Buprenorphine is an FDA approved opioid addiction treatment. Currently Subutex® & Suboxone® are the only Buprenorphine medications approved by the FDA. Buprenorphine itself is opioid itself, but the maximal effects are less than other more dangerous opioid agonist like methadone and herion. By producing enough agonist, individuals taking Buprenophine that have become addicted to other opioids are able to discontinue abuse with minimized withdrawl side-effects. In 1965, K.W. Bentley discovered the class of compounds synthesized from an alkaloid of thebaine, the opium poppy plant, known as Papaver somniferum. Among these semi-synthetic compounds is Buprenorphine - the first in a series of opioid agonists. Many were more than 1000 times more effective than the analgesic, morphine. In the 1980s, Reckitt & Colman, today known as Reckitt Benckiser, introduced Buprenorphine hydrochloride for sale. Buprenorphine, an analgesic, was first made in sublingual tablets of 0.2 mg (Temgesic). It was also made as an injectable of 0.3 mg/ml (Buprenex). Read More...

What is Suboxone®?
 Suboxone® is the first narcotic drug available for prescription from a doctor's office for use in the treatment of opioid dependence under the Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 or DATA 2000. The primary active ingredient in Suboxone is Buprenorphine, which itself is a partial opioid agonist. This means the the opioid effects and withdrawal symptoms from Buprenorphine are less than other full opioid agonists such as heroin, methadone, morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, and others. Suboxone, taken as sublingual tablets or "under the tongue", has been shown to help in suppressing opioid withdrawal symptoms, decrease illicit opioid cravings and use, and under the correct supervision can help with overcoming an opioid dependence. Suboxone comes in 2mg and 8mg sizes of sublingual tablet form. Suboxone contains naloxone, which blocks the effects of medicines and drugs like methadone, morphine, and heroin. This is added to prevent people from injecting Suboxone and improper use of the medication. Injecting naloxone can cause withdrawal symptoms. Suboxone is the most commonly prescribed medication and given to patients during the maintenance phase of treatment. Subutex is typically given during the first couple of treatment. Because Suboxone has a lower potential for overdose and abuse, unlike methadone, Certified Doctors are able to prescribe take home supplies of Suboxone in certain circumstances. Read More...

The Benefits of Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction
 Since 1949, the 12-step program developed by Alcoholics Anonymous has been the dominant way we think about facing and fighting addiction. Many people have successfully used this community- and willpower-based approach to escaping addiction. However, countless others have tried it, and relapsed. With the powerful hold that opioid addiction has on so many people in America, it’s time to face addiction with an equally powerful—and proven—method: medication-assisted treatment (or MAT). MAT is the practice of using drugs like suboxone and subutex to help people dependent on painkillers gradually ease themselves off their addiction. While these treatments have been available for many years, there is a stigma to relying on these medications to help fight addiction rather than the traditional willpower and community approach of a 12-step program. Here are five benefits to using an MAT approach to ending opioid dependency:
1. MAT is proven to have better results than conventional programs alone.
2. MAT stops withdrawal symptoms so patients can live a normal life.
3. MAT is flexible, allowing medication to be taken at home or in a clinic
4. MAT offers multiple drugs (like suboxone and buprenorphine) to find what works for you
5. It’s easy to find an MAT/suboxone provider near you Read More...