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How long does Subutex stay in your system?

Medically reviewed by Carmen Fookes, BPharm Last updated on Jun 17, 2020.

Official Answer

by Drugs.com
  • The effects of Subutex last for 24 hours.
  • After one dose of Subutex, no trace of the drug would be expected to be found after 5 to 8 days in healthy people, or 7 to 14 days in those with severe liver disease.
  • Subutex has been discontinued and in most cases has been replaced by Suboxone.

Subutex was an oral sublingual medication that contained buprenorphine that was used to treat opioid addiction. Subutex was not approved to relieve pain. Subutex has now been discontinued.

Subutex sublingual was only usually given at the start of an addiction treatment program. After the initial period, Subutex was usually switched to another medication such as Bunavail, Sublocade, Suboxone, or Zubsolv. In most cases, Subutex has been replaced by Suboxone.

When calculating how long Subutex lasted in the body, you need to consider the elimination half-life of buprenorphine. This is the time it takes for half of the drug to be metabolized and eliminated in the body.

The elimination half-life of buprenorphine is 24 to 42 hours Generally, it takes four to five half-lives for a drug to be eliminated from the body. In most healthy people, no trace of Subutex would have been found after 120 to 210 hours (5 to 8 days).

Buprenorphine is metabolized by the liver and eliminated in the urine and feces. In people with moderate-to-severe liver disease, the half-life of buprenorphine is significantly prolonged.

  • In moderate liver impairment, the half-life of buprenorphine is increased by 35%.
  • In severe liver impairment, the half-life of buprenorphine is increased by 57%.

Based on a calculation of 5 half-lives for Subutex to be removed:

  • For people with moderate liver disease, no trace of Subutex would be expected to be found after approximately 160 to 284 hours (6 to 12 days).
  • For people with severe liver disease, no trace of Subutex would be expected to be found after approximately 188 to 330 hours (7 to 14 days). 
References
  • Subutex Oct 2019 Cerner Multum https://www.drugs.com/mtm/subutex-oral-sublingual.html
  • Suboxone (buprenorphine HCl and naloxone HCl dihydrate sublingual tablets) Subutex (buprenorphine HCl sublingual tablets) Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals, Inc. https://www.naabt.org/documents/packageinsert.pdf

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