Posted on 6 December, 2018
Many of my readers have witnessed the resuscitation of somebody that overdosed with opioids. He or she is breathing very slowly or is already in respiratory paralysis. She is given Naloxone (Narcan), a physiological antagonist of the opioids and very soon she is awake, agitated, in acute withdrawal. If you remain at the scene you will notice that 15 to 20 minutes later the individual is going back to sleep and probably a second injection of Narcan is necessary. You wonder why, this is the simple explanation: Narcan is metabolized and inactivated by the body in 15 to 20 minutes. That substance, Naloxone, is added to Buprenorphine, and the combination is called Suboxone. Being the same substance it is eliminated by the body at the same speed, so in 20 minutes Suboxone turns into Buprenorphine, whose brand name is Subutex. We can say that Suboxone turns into Subutex in 20 minutes. Is there a need to pay three times more money just for 20 minutes of unnecessary antagonism ? The substance that remains working for 24 hours is Buprenorphine that by stimulating the surviving opioid receptors eliminates the craving for opiods.