What should I avoid while taking Subutex?

While taking Subutex (buprenorphine), a medicine that helps treat addiction to opioid drugs (including heroin and narcotic painkillers like morphine), you should avoid:
  • drinking alcohol. The combination of alcohol and Subutex can cause dangerous side effects, even death.
  • drinking grapefruit juice, unless your doctor tells you it is okay
  • using any drugs recreationally
  • becoming pregnant or breastfeeding. Subutex may harm a developing fetus or a nursing infant. 
  • taking any other drug or supplement without talking to your doctor and pharmacist first. Before starting treatment with Subutex, give your doctor and pharmacist a list of all your other medicines (prescription and nonprescription) and dietary and herbal supplements. Once you're on Subutex, do not take any new drug or supplement without checking with your doctor and pharmacist first. Be especially careful to avoid any drugs that may cause you to become sleepy, including tranquilizers, antihistamines, sleeping pills, anxiety medications, antidepressants, sedatives or certain painkillers. 
  • driving a vehicle, operating heavy machinery or doing any potentially dangerous activity until you know how Subutex affects you.
  • taking Subutex incorrectly. Take Subutex exactly as your doctor tells you to. Do not take more or less or take it more or less frequently than prescribed. Allow Subutex tablets to dissolve slowly under your tongue, which can take two minutes or more. Do not chew or swallow the tablets, and do not talk while they are dissolving. Never inject Subutex.
  • missing medical appointments. Your doctor may want to monitor you closely while you take Subutex, especially in the beginning of treatment. 
  • sharing Subutex with others. Subutex should be taken only by people to whom it is prescribed under close supervision of a doctor.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.