Dear Aunt Agony... Subutex or Methadone?

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Dear Aunt Agony...

Hope you had a decent xmas and new year.

We had a wonderful white xmas over here in Fife,Scotland.

Story book stuff it was.

Anyway,i wanted to say that I'm currently on a waiting list for the local methadone programme (16 weeks waiting list) as i'm struggling to buy it on the street now what with everything else im using.

I wanted to ask you about Subutex/Suboxone as you mentioned it in your blog.

I know everyone is different and there are a lot of factors involved but the stuff i've read about it is conflicting.

Is it a poor cousin of methadone in your opinion?

Would it spoil my enjoyment of heroin and other stuff if i was given Subutex instead of methadone as some say it's a blocker.

That's been said about methadone but when i use H on top of methadone it certainly doesn't block or take away any enjoyment.

Thanks for reading and i hope your doing well man.

Cheers,

Ed x


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Aunt Agony says:


Hiya Ed,

Oh, I'm not too bad... though it could be better(quite a bit better, haha!)

Yeah, we had a white christmas over here too. Normally if I'd have said that it would've meant there'd been a lot of crack about, but not this time... not in france. Just cold cold snow.

Subutex,

No, it's not a poor cousin of methadone, it's very different and more like heroin than methadone. Unfortunately after being a heroin addict it then only serves to keep illness at bay and you don' get any of the classic opiate effects. I prefer methadone. But you can shoot subutex.

Yes, subutex does act as a blocker., and Suboxone is even worse. friends of mine stabilized on subutex tell me they don't even feel the effects of a shot of H unless they've not taken subs for at least 24hrs. Though on low doses you can feel it, but it's still weakened.

I'm the same as you,I don't feel methadone blocks the effect of heroin, though it does depend on what dose you're taken and how long before you've just knocked it back. I find the effect of smack is lessened if you use withing the first 5 hours of drinking a usual dose of methadone. But it's only weakened, not blocked.

When Subutex was first introduced as a substitute (in general) it worked like this:

Methadone was prescribed to injecting addicts, and subutex was preferredfor those who were snorting or chasing. But over here in france there are more IV users on subs than on juice. Another problem I've come across is that injecting addicts were not initially held at ALL by subutex
and were getting sick even after being medicated. The period of stabilization is certainly harsher for sub users. Personally, I'd always choose methadone, but I also know people that swear by subutex. I suppose is what ever you get used to and what you know psychologically will hold you.

Why don't you try this:

buy some subutex on the street (say an average daily dose x 3) try using it and see how it goes. If it's agreeable maybe try speaking to your GP and seeing if you can cross over bu on the strict condition if you feel it's not foing what it should you can swich right back to methadone... it shouldn't be problem. This happens a lot, as many people suffer horrendous migraines with
buprenorphine (subutex) and are then put on meth.

What's not in doubt is that Subutex WILL block the effect of heroin. So, if you want to continue using H it's not the best choice.

Let me know what you do and keep in touch...

All my Thoughts

Auntie. X

26 comments :

Bec said...

I realise that I am late in commenting seeing as I'm doing so 3 years after the original post so I'll comment to warn anyone else who wants to try it...

Anyone who is addicted to Heroin or Methadone that takes Subutex will be catapulted into a full blown rattle and no matter how much gear you take to try and sort yourself out you cannot. You just have to wait til the Subutex has worn off. Bad times!

If you take Subutex when you are not addicted to anything it will give you the same feeling as taking heroin would.

If you are already on Methadone and are advised to switch to Subutex you are advised to take no heroin or methadone for (I think its 3 days or something similar) So basically get half of the worst of your rattle done and switch...not much point really is there?

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Bec, thanks for your comment.

The post isn't 3 years old it's just I backdated it as I didn't want them to head the site as they have a page of their own. They were put up only about two months ago.

I agree with your second statement that someone who has never used heroin will get the same effect from subutex, but your first statement doesn't hold true to many users. I know many addicts who have made the transition from heroin to subutex without the slightest rattle, and there are even comments someone on this site of people swearing by it. Of the others who have a harsher transition it's still nothing compared to a proper heroin rattle... just uncomfortable. I also do kow people who have said they had days of proper withdrawal but they are in a small minority. Also using heroin and then switching to subutex when you can't score or have no cash doesn't leave users in withdrawal. Over 80% of the addicts here in france use subutex as a substitute and the huge percentage of them use on top and only use their medication when they've no smack. It holds them as methadone holds me whe I've no gear. I've also used subutex alongside and on top of methadone, and although it doesn't give any opiate kind of feeling it certainly didn't put me into withdrawals.

So 'can' happen and 'will' happen are miles apart and we must be careful with things like that.

Personally, I think if I was put on subutex from heroin I would be one of the few who withdraw. I started my opiate addiction on subutex and even then I was taking five times the amount addicts are prescribed nowadays to hold them. It was a great opiate though when I was new to it... better than heroin in that it has a much longer duration.

Thanks again for reading and your comment... All My Thoughts, Shane. X

Bec said...

Hello again,

I suppose everyones different, there are always exceptions to the rule, after all everyones tolerence and body reactions are different. I would think the higher your tolerence for heroin you have the more you would rattle if you took subutex.

My comment was taken only from my own own experience when a friend bought a load of subutex and handed them out round a group of 8 of us. All of the people in the group had higher tolerences and used at least 6 bags a day some of the group also used methadone. Alot of them had taken subutex before when they'd been in prison (which meant they'd all been clean when they last took subutex) so as soon as they got their hands on the tablets, they went straight down their necks or up their noses. I decided to hold back and keep mine for later (thank fuck) all of them were ill, except me and no matter how much gear they took they couldn't pull themselves round. Whilst I got slowly and surely more wrecked by the minute :) Aww, I did feel bad for them though.
So yes, I suppose I can only draw from that experience and can't vouch for everybody, especially those with lower tolerences.

What I don't understand is how people who've taken subutex for a long time can take gear ontop of it and still feel the effects of the gear... Afterall, isn't subutex supposed to be a blocker?

Anonymous said...

Hi, just reading the posts above as I am 5 days into my subutex programme and wanted a bit more info. When I was smoking gear I used to also use subutex when out of gear. I took it to early once which was about 5 hrs after my smoke and yep I rattled to hell. There is no smokng your way out of it. Now the way the transition works is to wait at least 8 hrs after heroin use then u can take half the dose you'll be on but they advise you try and wait as long as possible. Then try wait 6 hours for your other half. I presume this was to prevent rattling. The next day you get your full dose, in my case 8mg. Also a 3 day course of diazipam. I must admit I felt a bit uncomfortable at night like a slight rattle for a few days but nothing that bad. Now It's holdin me and theres no point scoring coz it'll do nowt. Glad I went down this route rather than meth because I don't want to use ever again and apparently they are easy to reduce from escpecially early on. Jeeesus i'm ranting, moral is if you wanna use subbies jus dont take to much too soon and if you wanna take gear on em just forget it, peace

4d4dca40-ca84-11e1-81fa-000bcdca4d7a said...

Hi all
Thought I would give some expert (I am a medicinal chemist) info on why subutex but not methadone is causing heavy users to go into withdrawal without possibilities to cure it with smack. The problem with Subutex is that is has a very high affinity (the strength in witch it binds) to the opiate receptors and at the same time it is only a low efficacy partial agonist (meaning that it can never give your opiate receptors full effect no matter what dose you take). This is of course the point with this medication, but if you are used to H or any other full opiate agonist, Subutex will only block the full effect and deliver it's partial effect, leaving the addict in withdrawal. Methadone on the other hand does not have as high affinity and have somewhat higher efficacy, giving the H a chance to have effect alongside it. If you are in a pitch getting withdrawals from Subutex, try getting hold on some Fentanyl or any of it's likes, they have even higher affinity than Subutex and are fulll agonists like H. Hope this could help someone out there. Take care
The Chemist

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Sounds like good advice The Chemist... thanks.

I started out on subutex (temegesic back then and not yet used as a heroin substitute) and the drug has absolutely no effect on me anymore... won't even take the edge off illness. Itmust do the trick for many though, as here in france Subutex is now the main prescribed substitute... something like 7 out of every ten addicts treated with it. I've heard both extremes: some swear by it and others say it left them rattling. And it doesn't seem to be about how much H you was using, as one of the biggest proponents of the drug I know was also one of the heaviest users I've known. Must be individual chemistry... some of us are just damned! X

Anonymous said...

hey, i was reading this thread.. thx for the info guys! anyways i smoked/ shot a little good stuff (between that and what i did last night totalled 1g) and decided to see what would happen if i took some bupe.. i read on a thread that i could be crushed on foil and smoked.. been doin that and its NOT BAD! anyways about 10 hours after my last dose i smoked about 3mg of subutex and it worked very well.. had me calm and ready to sleep.. no rattles here (however i have been on bupe for a couple months now so my system mayt just be used to it


Anonymous said...

Hey!! Hope you all well?? I've just come across this conversation and woah.... It brought back some memories... For me it's been 15yrs of smack, subs and meth, and although the subs worked very well in the early years of my addiction buy the time I was shooting up 6 or more a day it did not, I have gone into serious withdrawals with it and that was supervised in rehab.. Any how I got clean on methadone and have been for a year now, honestly I totally regret using anything on top of my smack and crack habit as it made it a whole lot worse to Kick!! I would say it's much safer to stock to the meth unless your ready to kick the gear, saves alot of hasstle... X

Anonymous said...

Great thread guys, I have been on subs for 10 months and after 18 years of high usage I think that's not to bad but I will admit to scoring last night but I am now scared to have a smoke but am scared as people have said that having B whilst on subs also throws you into withdrawal. Does anyone know if thats true? Not asking for the go ahead to use guy's but I am interested to find out without 'finding out'

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

hey anon, no, taking heroin while on subutex will not throw u into withdrawals... it's not even possible. People really do speak a huge amout of crap, jesus. I think some, just because they're clean, want to either create scare stories or invent another bout of sickness so as they've some nightmare tale to tell. 80% of the drug addicts on France are on Subutex and of them, I'd guess, 80% use on top (some every day, others when they can) NO-ONE goes into withdrawals. The subutex will slightly block the effect, but if you've not used smack for some time then you should get a decent hit of it regardless.

But be careful, as someone else remarked, that you are talking of SUBUTEX and not SUBOXONE, a the two are quite different. Suboxone is a much heavier blocker, and taking suboxone (if you've a heroin habit) can knock u into withdrawals. The other way around, you'll still not be sick, just maybe sick you've spent your money and got fuck all effect in return.

Smoke away... sounds like a pretty good idea to me. X

Anonymous said...

Hi, I just came across this blog when trying to find out if people should be taking subutex without and addiction to heroin.
the reason I am tryin to find this out is because my boyfriend was an addict but went into rehab over 3 years ago and has been clean (as far as I know)ever since. The thing is he came home from work yesterday and went to bed as he felt ill and had a migraine. I found a box of subutex (8mg) in his coat pocket and didn't know what they were. I googled them to find out that they are used for heroin withdrawal. This has shocked me. 6 tablets are missing out of the box and the box doesn't have like a prescription label on or anything. Can anyone tell me why my boyfriend would be taking these now when he has been clean for so long? I am really worried that maye he is back on heroin. Would I really have missed this? he works pretty much 7 days a week so is always tired but I don't really know what the signs would be?? Any answers would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.xx

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

hey Anon,

maybe look at this in a more positive way: you've not found heroin in your bf's coat pocket. And just because he's using subutex doesn't mean he's using subutex because he's been using heroin again. maybe he had a wobble or some days he was thinking of heroin and instead got hold of a substitute to take that urge away. If he done that you should be proud of him as 90% would go straight for the heroin.

Asthe box isn't prescribed to him he's either bought or borrowed them in the street. They would most likely cost more than heroin itself (a full box certainly) so i couldn't see him buying subutex if he was using heroin. That doesn't mean he's not using heroin, but if he's showing no signs of it, no bizarre behaviours before you found the subutex, etc... then it's probably just the subutex.

Why was you searching his pockets? Going through his pockets? Only you will know the truthful answer, but if you was looking for something then you can't really trust him... even after he's been clean three years. He'll pick up on that and his drug use will then be kept secret from you. There's often a paranoia in the non-using partner when their other half gets clean - a paranoia that is cancerous and damaging. That's not a criticism but the constant suspecting, accusations, grillings can keep heroin a daily presence in your and the addicts life, and the constant reference to it is often the trigger that gets the addict shooting again.

Unless you have some indisputable proof that your bf is using heroin again then you should be relieved he's turned to subutex rather than heroin. He's felt week, resisted, and taken the help of the drug that is prescribed for such instances. X

Anonymous said...

I know this isn't a pregnancy forum, but this seems like the best place for me to pose my question. I've been on Subutex my entire pregnancy. I'm presently 38 weeks....so really any day now. I'm down from 16mgs to 2mgs daily. Ideally I'd have liked to be off all together, but I can't seem to make that happen. My concern is pain care during & post birth. I always thought that since Subutex did not have the naloxene that Suboxone does that you could use anything on top of it & still feel effects, but Im pretty Sure I've already proven that wrong for myself. As much as I do not want this bambino to go through withdrawals I can't help but also think of myself & pain relief. Call me selfish. I was told today that one of the meds they routinely give while in labor is Nubain (which if I'm on subutex means I will go into withdrawals because it ~the Nubain~ contains a partial antagonist (is that right?). ). Anyways, the doc also said Demerol & morphine are other options. I've given birth before, 5 years ago & wasn't taking anything at the time. But I did need pain relief during labour & for a few weeks after...I felt like I had been hit by a train. I guess I'm trying to ask is will ANYTHING work on top of the subutex? Thanks.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hey Anon... I'll answer quickly and briefly as I was online as this came through.

Firstly, yes, other painkillers will work with subutex, though other opiates may not be as efficient. I'm not sure if you've noticed but opiates will never take away a headache... even if yopu double or triple dose, yet two paracetemol or ibuprofen will. So there's a quick proof that other painkillers work, and at there recommend dose.

Concerning going into withdrawals, as long as the doctors are aware (and i'm sure they are) that you're using subutex they'll not administer ANYTHING that will bring on withdrawals while you're giving birth. Apart from anything it could be very dangerous, and we all know the weird effects withdrawals play on our bodies (libido, women's cycles, etc), so who knows what effects the withdrawals may have during a pregnancy and contractions. I've know two women on high doses of subutex who have given birth and neither of them were given anything (known or otherwise) that caused withdrawals. You've also the right to refuse medication, so if against what you know and have researched they are going to administer that drug, refuse it and they quickly find an alternative because the pain restriction in patients is as much for the doctors benefit as it is for the patient.

Baby born addicted to subutex. Obviously not ideal and not what anyone would ever want for their child but opiates aren't a drug you can quit just because you're pregnant or they're not in someone's best interest. If it was that easy they'd not be a problem. So don't kick yourself or feel evil or bad for the baby being born with atht problem. You know in yourself you'd never have wanted that and that honesty is enough. Be thankful you're at least on the subutex rather than having a heroin addicted baby which is much harsher. The two women I knew, they both gave birth to addicted babies (very mildly addicted as the amount of subutex that reaches the baby is minimal). Both babies were weaned off over a fortnight with no side effects or suffering whatsoever. They were normal, healthy births and babies. The only thing I did find was that one mother was paranoid and scared evertime the baby yawned or cried for no reason that it was suffering withdrawals and couldn't express it. That thought really got to her. I don't think she had any valid grounds for that worry... Babies yawn and cry.I also don't think the hospital would stop medication until they're a thousand per cent sure the baby had been weaned clean.

Ok, hope some of that helps and maybe someone else may see this and have some input for you...

All the Best, Shane. X

Oh Negative said...

No death threats, sorry I'm just not much of a poet..So you're safe.

Just started subutex today. Got one under my tongue as I type, in fact.

I can't speak as a heroin head, only tried it once and I don't talk about my experience openly. Roxies, oxycodone, demerol, dilauded, morphine and fentanyl were my drugs o' choice. I've been on them for about a year (yeah I'm a lightweight, kinda) so here I am on subutex trying to detox.

Anywho...my last fix was 4 days ago. Day one was okay-ish, nose ran a little bit, got the shakes and watery eyes. I heard it through the grapevine, that taking subs too early can send you into unholy rattles. Day 2..Was getting a bit rattly, really eyeing the bottle of 10/325 percocets on my dresser. The sweats kicked in, nausea, big pupils. Day 4 (today) the head games kicked in, I felt so depressed and that just isn't me. I felt like I had lost a loved one. My anxiety was through the roof..weird feeling being apathetic and on edge, prepared for a battle to the death. I stripped down and stepped into my walk-in shower. There are jets surrounding me, overhead there is a rainfall square. I fiddled and fumbled with the digital interface. I turned on the rainfall spout and waited for it to heat up before pressing play on the interface where an mp3 player is connected. I stepped under the water as the Seether cover of careless whisper began to play. I sang along in a soft raspy tone until ~BAM!~ It was as if someone nailed me in the jugular with an emo dart. I sank to the floor over the drain and began to sob, I truly wept harder than I have in many a years. I managed to console myself briefly and climbed to my feet before shutting off the water. I grabbed a fresh towel and put it to my face, inhaling the scent of Gain detergent as I dried my hair. I looked in the mirror and stared into my own soft blue eyes, they were a bit bloodshot, surrounded by dark, bruise-like circles as if I had been dabbling with eyeliner. This feeling of complete fuckedness hit me and I began to sob again as I dried the rest of my body before lumbering into my bedroom to put on some boxers.

After all that, still sobbing, I took the bottle of 8mg subutex and decided it was time. I carefully opened the bottle and took a tiny pill from within before halving it. I popped it into my mouth and under my tongue it went. I nudged it far back there with my tongue piercing and sat down on my bed. I took a deep breath and released it, smirking a bit as I noticed a slight numbness on the top of my tongue where the pill had touched. The pill tasted like shit as it dissolved. It wasn't very long. My chills subsided. It was like being wrapped in a warm comforting blanket and embraced by a loved one. Ah, once again there was an opiate filling my body with its effects. The rattles were gone gone gone, back to hell from whence they came. There wasn't really a 'high' but there was so much relief it felt like there was. That is my current subutex experience. Seems I am QUITE A BIT late! Posting here since the posts are dated 2011.

Mikeq Quirk said...

That's bull shit it doesn't make u rattle under 8 mil u want any proper helpful advise from a real ex baghead email me I'm sure I can help mikeq82@outlook.com pass it on , layers

Mikeq Quirk said...

4got 2 mention I used 2 like young boys was why I started using H to try and stop those feelings. finally my conviction for sexual abuse against minors was what allowed me 2 kick both addictions, as in prison I was reunited with Jesus and my life has only been fantastic since.

Anonymous said...

I am sick from heroin rate now.. I shoot it.. I do a 40 of raw at once three times a day... Ive been smoking crack off n on tonight n course It eats your dope up and now I'm starting to get sick. I have 7 SUBUTEX and I am wondering if I shot one would it throw me into withdrawal.. When I take SUBOXINE before 24 hours it throws me into bad withdrawals .. And I am going to get some heroin sometime today but since I'm ill will subutex put me in withdrawal like suboxine does AND is it true if I do a subutex on a herion habbit and I shoot one 8 mg .. Later when I get money n get heroin will subutex block my high from heroin?

Anonymous said...

I been hooked on pain killers for 15 years. I started using liquid oxy on my 20s. I got so bad that at one point I was using 4 to 6 hundred milligrams of oxy a day, just to feel normal, anyway I've been taking tec Notre for a year and it's totally gelled me get off oxy and h. But I'm down to a quarter a tec a day and I'm ready to stop taking them I'm just freakin out cuz the withdraw from these things are a lot worse than I thought they would be. The physical party ain't that bad it's just that it comes with a very strong depression. Wish me luck cuz my drs kicked me out because I wouldn't stop smoking pot. Anyway here I am, I almost think I'm gonna have to go from a quarter tec a day, down to a sixteenth a day and then go from there. I know the tecs helped me quit oxy, but I feel like I need somehelp to kick the tecs once and for all. I'M SICK OF BEING SICK!!

scarey320 said...

I have a son who is on 120 mg of methadone daily, and still shoots heroin, isn't that dangerous?

alan martin said...

Sub's are the best

Michelle Rusch said...

I guess I'm just gonna get to the point rather than spill my whole history..my bf was using heroin for a bunch of years while we were broken up. He went to jail and was clean for 8 months, got out and we got back together. About a month later he was using again. I have no experience with heroin so at first I didn't know what was going on. For the next 2 years it was a battle between the dope and subs. He always told me "I can't get high when I'm on subs" and for a little bit I believed him till I researched it. Honestly, I dunno why people waste money on either dope or subs just to take them at the same time cause it seems like a waste of either or both! Anyway, I think he's been clean for a while now but there are times I think he's high even though he's on suboxone. He now has to go to a new doctor and he wants to be on subutex because he has no insurance and that is the cheapest. I'm just worried that that's his bullshit excuse to be on a medicine that he knows will allow him to do dope if he can get his hands on it and not worry about getting sick. Am I just nuts? Lol. Also, he does have legitimate pain issues that any doctor would give him opiates for but he would rather be on subs cause it helps with the pain, eases his anxiety, and he can still get a little buzz sometimes which I'm fine with, I prefer that over sticking a needle in his arm. We have 2 children together and I want their father to be around for them, not have a chance to stick too much in his veins that he ODs and leaves us all :( Ive read everything on here and maybe I just need a direct answer to me..does the subutex block the dope? Or is it just partial or none at all? And if it only weakens the high, you would have to do more to get that high and doesn't that give you a higher chance of ODing especially if you're not using like you used to? And is it true that its the naloxone in the suboxone that really does that blocking? Cause subutex doesn't contain that right? One more thing, is subutex also used to treat pain?

Simon Lucas said...

Subutex above 8mg will certainly block the effects of Heroin. I am currently on 4mg after a 4 month taper and have dabbled with heroin to my personal chagrin and can say the effects are so mollified by the subutex as to not be worth the expense. Below 4mg, who can say, presumably the effects will strengthen.

Anonymous said...

I have been on and off H ever since I was 15. I'd been on Methadone for the last 10 years almost and had my last dose on Wed of 26ml and unfortunately was smoking right up until yesterday. I had a smoke at 8 last night and then popped a 8mg subutex in my mouth at 9:30 today. Sweet jess, within an hour I felt the withdrawal step up a gear and now all I want is a jab as I've done this before, for all my sins. Point being, how long have I got a wait until I feel this bag I've bought. Was told a minimum of 12 hrs but probably more? Thing is, because I've only had one 8mg. Can I not just have it now?

Anonymous said...

Yes bc it is going to take way more heroin than usual to get high. Once over 50mg of methadone it starts to have a blocking effect..so if he usually shot half a gram to get high..he would probably need AT LEAST double to triple the amount of heroin to get high. And what he may not realize it's that even though he isn't getting the same high..the morphine is still going to his brain. And he could easily overdose. Trust me..I know from experience. I'm not a doctor..but I am someone who was addicted to heroin for ten years..And I shot heroin while on methadone too. 120mg is a high dose..so obviously it isn't working. I switched to suboxone 18 months ago and I have only.relapsed once. It has truly saved my life. If he is not ready to get clean..then neither of them will work regardless. Once I was ready to get clean..I got on suboxone and I go to AA meetings and I don't have any urge to use. But..every one is ready on there own time. No one else can make him get clean but himself. I suggest Alanon. My mom is in it and it has changed her life. Families need help too. I don't know if this answered your question..but I will pray for you and your son. ... Jenna

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone just stumbled across your "subutex vs methadone" dilemma. I see lot of people scared of using subutex or not wanting to use it, for me it was the best decision eve really, if you really want to get clean there is nothing better than subutex, first it stops the withdrawal even in smaller doses, doesn't make you drowsy so if you have to go to work, school etc you are not falling asleep and yes it does block the opiates, which if u r serious about quitting is the best thing that it can do for you. But if you take SUBUTEX and try to do heroin it definitely DOES NOT make you rattle, of you had the experience of rattling than it's most likely because you have been prescribed SUBOXONE not subutex. SUBOXONE is buprenorphine with Nalaxone and nalaxone is the one that causes you to rattle as it reverses the effects of opiates and is used treating overdoses. So from my long years of experience yes u can do heroin on top of subutex, but u won't get high so u might as well just not do it at all, also do not try to do higher doses trying to get the high after u have taken subutex because u r more likely to overdose. Subutex has half life around 24-48 hrs so if u really want to get high it's better to wait xx