Information on Suboxone – How Long Does it Last?

Suboxone PillsIf you have an opioid addiction chances are you have been prescribed Suboxone. Suboxone is a medication that was specifically formulated to treat this type of addiction. And while some will abuse Suboxone just like they abused the opioids, most people will take the medication as prescribed and get the results they are looking for. Most people who take Suboxone have one big questions and that is how long does the drug last or stay in ones system?

Below we will discuss just that as well as a few other things about Suboxone. The two main ingredients found in Suboxone are naloxone and buprenorphine. Generally speaking it is administered in either film form or tablet form. When taken this way it simple dissolved under the tongue and makes its way into your system. Most people prefer taking it in film form because you don’t get that bitter taste in your mouth you get from the tablet.

This is a single dose medication that is taken daily. The recommended dose is 16/4 mg. However, in some cases the dosage will be progressively increased to 24/6 mg to help deal with the withdrawal symptoms.

Suboxone General Information

Half Life & Peak Levels

The amount of time it takes for half of Suboxone to be eliminated from your body is known as the half life. This actually goes for any medication, substance or drug. As stated before, Suboxone has to main active ingredients. Buprenorphine and naloxone. Both ingredients have a different half lives and should be considered as separate chemicals.

Based on studies buprenorphine has a half life of 24 to 60 hours and naloxone has a half life of 2 to 12 hours. The reason buprenorphine has a much longer half life is because it was designed to treat and manage the withdrawal symptoms associated with opioid addiction. As far as peak levels go, it takes buprenorphine up to 100 minutes to near its peak effect.

So now lets talk about how long Suboxone will stay in your body. A big part of suboxone maintenance treatment is a lot of mandatory drug tests. These tests can be ordered by either your job or your school. Generally speaking these tests are looking for evidence of other drug use. But detecting drugs is not always as simple as taking a test. Other things such as how the drug is being used as well as the characteristics of the drug play a huge factor.

Currently I don’t know of any test being commercially sold that can accurately measure the levels of buprenorphine found in suboxone. However, buprenorphine can be detected in hair, blood and urine. There are specific tests that are ordered to test for suboxone in your urine. They include CEDIA or cloned enzyme donor immunoassay and LC-MS-MS which stands for liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. Oral fluid is another option that can be used to test for opioid use.

If you are a healthy adult and you take a single dose of buprenorphine, it will take about 9 hours to be detected with a CEDIA test and about 76 hours to be detected with a LC-MS-MS test. That basically means it can be detected in your urine for up to three days after you take the drug. If you are using it in high doses it can be detected even more than three days later.

As with all drugs, there is a chance that you can become addicted. You becoming addicted will depend on how you take the drug and how much of it you take. For example, if you take suboxone via injection it is getting into your system a lot quicker than it would if you took it in tablet form. As a result it is more likely you will become addicted to it. If you are using Suboxone and you don’t have a prescription for it, that will increase your chances of becoming addicted to it.

Your chances also increase if you have never been addicted to opiates before. If you think you are addicted to Suboxone, seek help as soon as possible.

The key is to make sure you take the medication as prescribed by your doctor. If you don’t have a prescription, don’t take it. If you are having some sort of issues that cause you to turn to drugs for help, go get help for those issues. You don’t want to be in a situation where you are addicted to anything. Its a scary place to be. And last but not least, if you every have any questions about using Suboxone, speak to your doctor. They will be glad to help you in any way they can.