Author(s): Robinson GM, Dukes PD, Robinson BJ, Cooke RR, Mahoney GN
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Abstract Two surveys of 12 months duration were undertaken on opioid users presenting to the Wellington Alcohol and Drug Centre before and after the introduction of a combination buprenorphine 0.2 mg-naloxone 0.17 mg tablet (Bu-Nx), which was launched in 1991 in the hope of reducing intravenous misuse. There was considerable intravenous (i.v.) misuse of buprenorphine 0.2 mg tablets (Bu) in 1990 with self-reports of misuse in 81\% of the patients over the 4 weeks prior to presentation, and 65\% of the patients had buprenorphine in their urine. In the repeat survey 57\% reported misuse of the Bu-Nx combination over the previous 4 weeks, and 43\% had buprenorphine +/- naloxone detected in their urine. There was a reduction in the street price of Bu-Nx. One-third of the patients who used Bu-Nx i.v. reported instances of withdrawal symptoms, and subjectively the drug was less attractive to misusers. The combination product may have less misuse potential than buprenorphine alone, but it remains a preparation, in the dosages employed, that is intravenously misused.
This article was published in Drug Alcohol Depend
and referenced in Advances in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety