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help: trying to switch from methadone to suboxone
  1. #1
    dwinters77 is offline New Member
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    Default help: trying to switch from methadone to suboxone

    hi
    I am new to this site. I have been on methadone for 13 years now. I never should have went. it was 2003 and I had no information. I was taking 4-8 loratabs a day for 6 months. it all started with severe migraines. I started seeing a psy doctor who is an addiction specialist. I was going for mental health nothing with addiction. we discussed my methadone and he suggested that I would be better off with suboxone. I was on MD for 1 year and weened myself Down to 2 mgs. then I was given about 30mgs from the clinic for 2 weeks "by mistake" then I went back up to 50mgs and stayed there for 7 years or so then 2011 I started going down 1 mg at a time until I have died off at 27 mgs. I have been there for 2 yrs. I finally told the dr that I would switch. I went today. he gave me buprenorphine. I took 27 mgs this AM. the dr told me to start tomorrow evening with (1) 8mg tablet. then I am supposed to take an 8mg tablet 3 times per day and I have to go see him in 7 days. I am going to check in Monday AM to make sure I'm doing okay. I am worried for many reasons. 1 I told him I didn't want to increase any medicine higher than where I was at. 2 I didn't want to be on this stuff forever like I had been on MD. 3 I work in a high stress professional environment. I have to be on top of my game at all times. I have 4 days off from work to make the switch. I have read about PW's and I have been scared. and I don't want to feel bad but I'm not looking to feel a buzz. I just want to fee normal. I am worried if I should even do this. I called the previous owner of the methadone clinic who I had been close to. he sold the place to a big corporate deal. he advised I saw where I'm at and maintain coming down. but I don't know if that is going to work as I've been on it so long I would feel a little bad (not terrible) when I would go down only the 1mg the 2nd time going down. I have read about the Cows sheet and dr's giving you more suboxone to cover up withdrawals. I need some good advice. my wife does t work and I cannot afford to have my work find out. I have to work at a high level suit and tie environment. would it work then immediately start coming down after a week slowly? is what he gave me going to be too much?
    I am supposed to start tomorrow evening. the other issue is I go to the MD every two weeks ( they stopped the 1 month takeout) and I am supposed to go this Friday to get my two weeks, if I don't I'm out and I have to start all over again. he gave me clonidine, something for nausea if I need it. I also take Wellbutrin and something for add. I know that's another story but right now I'm focused on this. can I get some friendly advice? I hope soon I can put all this behind me. oh yeah I still get bad migraines and I told the dr I was worried that when I switch to suboxone that I read the other ingredient can cause migraines. he told me that if I take the medicine as he tells me that it won't get into my system and I won't have that issue. again I'm on 27mgs methadone he's transferring me to buprenorphine then to suboxone.
    thank you

  2. #2
    dwinters77 is offline New Member
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    I'm sorry sometimes I get so nervous I re-read what I write and it's confusing. he gave me 24 mgs of buprenorphine. he is going to keep me on that for a month then switch to suboxone. from what I've read that's too much. but can someone help tell me how much I should take safely and still work 4 days later? i don't want to get into taking too much of this stuff. and does anyone think it would help me better than the Methadone than what I'm currently taking?
    thanks again

  3. #3
    Ricky71 is offline Advanced Member
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dwinters77 View Post
    hi
    I am new to this site. I have been on methadone for 13 years now. I never should have went. it was 2003 and I had no information. I was taking 4-8 loratabs a day for 6 months. it all started with severe migraines. I started seeing a psy doctor who is an addiction specialist. I was going for mental health nothing with addiction. we discussed my methadone and he suggested that I would be better off with suboxone. I was on MD for 1 year and weened myself Down to 2 mgs. then I was given about 30mgs from the clinic for 2 weeks "by mistake" then I went back up to 50mgs and stayed there for 7 years or so then 2011 I started going down 1 mg at a time until I have died off at 27 mgs. I have been there for 2 yrs. I finally told the dr that I would switch. I went today. he gave me buprenorphine. I took 27 mgs this AM. the dr told me to start tomorrow evening with (1) 8mg tablet. then I am supposed to take an 8mg tablet 3 times per day and I have to go see him in 7 days. I am going to check in Monday AM to make sure I'm doing okay. I am worried for many reasons. 1 I told him I didn't want to increase any medicine higher than where I was at. 2 I didn't want to be on this stuff forever like I had been on MD. 3 I work in a high stress professional environment. I have to be on top of my game at all times. I have 4 days off from work to make the switch. I have read about PW's and I have been scared. and I don't want to feel bad but I'm not looking to feel a buzz. I just want to fee normal. I am worried if I should even do this. I called the previous owner of the methadone clinic who I had been close to. he sold the place to a big corporate deal. he advised I saw where I'm at and maintain coming down. but I don't know if that is going to work as I've been on it so long I would feel a little bad (not terrible) when I would go down only the 1mg the 2nd time going down. I have read about the Cows sheet and dr's giving you more suboxone to cover up withdrawals. I need some good advice. my wife does t work and I cannot afford to have my work find out. I have to work at a high level suit and tie environment. would it work then immediately start coming down after a week slowly? is what he gave me going to be too much?
    I am supposed to start tomorrow evening. the other issue is I go to the MD every two weeks ( they stopped the 1 month takeout) and I am supposed to go this Friday to get my two weeks, if I don't I'm out and I have to start all over again. he gave me clonidine, something for nausea if I need it. I also take Wellbutrin and something for add. I know that's another story but right now I'm focused on this. can I get some friendly advice? I hope soon I can put all this behind me. oh yeah I still get bad migraines and I told the dr I was worried that when I switch to suboxone that I read the other ingredient can cause migraines. he told me that if I take the medicine as he tells me that it won't get into my system and I won't have that issue. again I'm on 27mgs methadone he's transferring me to buprenorphine then to suboxone.
    thank you
    dwinters77 - No, don't start the buprenorphine tomorrow night, you will go into precipitated withdrawal! You'll need to be off the methadone for a good 4-5 days before you can start the buprenorphine? It could be longer than 4-5 days, you really have to use the COWS worksheet to make sure you score 26 or higher to do the induction onto the buprenorphine, that's the only true accurate way! Not sure why the doc wants to start you on buprenorphine then switch you to suboxone, I've heard some people have issues with naloxone? I highly suggest that you read Robert's sub taper plan, here's a link for you - https://www.drugs.com/forum/suboxone...apy-66109.html

    Many, many people have used Robert's plan with great success! And most people become stable on 4mg/day or less! 24mg/day as suggested by your doctor is way too much! What a lot of folks do is get the subs or in your case the buprenorphine and then with the help of the members here in the forums use Robert's sub taper plan? If Robert's plan is followed directly as outlined you'll do great just like the hundreds if not thousands before you have! And to answer your last question, yes, make the switch to buprenorphine then you can taper off that much easier than the methadone using Robert's plan! There are members here that have made the switch from methadone to subs and then got totally clean, they'll be by your thread to give you advice and support? Hang tight, there are a lot of experienced members here that will help you do this correctly? I wish you good luck! God bless us all!
    Iluv2smile likes this.

  4. #4
    dwinters77 is offline New Member
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    thank you, i have only 4 days off. I don't have 4-5 days to wait. I read Roberts plan and it sounds good, but I have a couple questions should I wait to do this? the reason is I am scared now based on what he has given me that I don't know what amount to accurately take. from what I read I was thinking 24 was too much as well. I am not familiar with much in the medicine world. growing up I only smoked pot. I never did anything else. it was only when I had debilitating migraines did I start taking prescribed loratabs. I knew the methadone guy as he was a customer of mine. I know little to nothing about meds. I am very scared and don't know what to do. I have never had major withdrawals ever. i have had mild when tapering off MD. but I am afraid MD is effecting my health in a bad way, my overall memory, muscles, my teeth etc.
    so should I try 12mgs? try breaking the 8mg pill in half and do that 3 times per day? 4x4x4? or should I wait and try another doctor one who may give me the correct amount of medication?
    Also the cows sheet do you continue that once you start the medicine? the doctor gave me meds to avoid most of the stuff on that sheet. he gave me BP meds, nausea meds, 800mg ibuprofens and Imodium.
    one other question, he told me when I take the pill I am supposed to dissolve it under my tongue for 10 minutes in siliva, then after that I can spit the pill out. is that true?
    Ming23 likes this.

  5. #5
    Ming23 is offline Platinum Member
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    Hey Dwinters
    Welcome!
    Ricky makes some important points. If you take bupe so soon after methadone you are guaranteed to put yourself into precipitated withdrawals, which is like being in hell.
    I made the error. Others have also, so we're here to advise you Not to take bupe until you reach a 26 on Cows sheet.
    Or, do what i did--go to a hospital that offers a program in which they switch you over from methadone to bupe. It takes 3 days and you sleep most of the time. Bette (Iluvtosmile) also did this.
    Do as Ricky said and check out Robert325's taper plan. It's the first post on suboxone thread.
    Your doctor and my doctor only took an 8-hour course to be a suboxone provider. They are inexperienced at best.
    You do Not want to take the bupe while there's still so much methadone in you. The bupe kicks the methadone off ur pain receptors and then the person goes into the most horrific withdrawals of their life. I went through it. It sucks.
    So, read Robert's plan. Note that the suggested induction dose is .5 mg bupe. That's half of one mg!! Methadone users need more bupe than folks kicking pills. The .5mg is then followed by .25 mg doses every hour until you feel ok.
    Consider the hospital option if you can't leave work.
    You've made a wise choice to get off the methadone. You will Never regret it!
    Promise!! Post when u can!

  6. #6
    dwinters77 is offline New Member
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    hey
    thank you
    one of my biggest fears is how much he gave me to take. I am supposed to take 8mg tablets 3 times per day. from what I've read that's too much..... but I don't know what I should do. I am worried should I wait until next month and try it again once I find out how much I should really be taking.
    I am figiting all in my house now trying to figure out if I should try to do it now or wait until next month and make sure I don't take more than I need.
    thank you

  7. #7
    Ming23 is offline Platinum Member
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    Dwinters
    You can't take subs with so much meth in ur system. Did u read the Robert325 taper sheet? Initial induction dose is .5 mg. Half of one mg; followed by .25mg every hour until no more wd.
    Read the sheet so to better understand how the taper is set up.
    Yes you need a plan. The doctor prescribed a very high dose because they follow the manufacturer's suggestion. However, experience indicates people do best on the Lowest Dose of subs that stop the wds. More is Not better when it pertains to suboxone. In fact, less is more.
    You would need to wait several days without taking any meds at all in order to achieve a 26 score on the cows sheet. Can u get into a hospital that will induct you? I did that the second time i tried to switch over from methadone to subs.
    The first time i tried, I didn't wait long enough and wound up in precipitated withdrawal.
    You do not wanna do that!!!!!
    Read the sub sticker at top of sub forum & see what u think.
    Last edited by Anonymous; 07-14-2016 at 10:08 AM.
    Iluv2smile likes this.

  8. #8
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    I just posted a huge comment ..
    Mods are Analizing it???
    Idk why..
    But I respect their positions and need this forum in my life..

    Bottom line..
    Time is not a good indicator of readiness to induce..
    The Cows is the only sure way you are ready..
    The people at your clinic or Drs office have not walked I your shoes..
    We have..

    No comfort Meds while waiting..
    You want to reach 26 on the COWS as quickly as possible..

    My. Story is almost exact
    Y your story.
    Only 10 years to get off the methadone.
    Now over 2 years off
    And
    Over 18 months off sub!

    It was worth every
    Tear
    Pain
    Twitch ..
    To be free is amazing!
    I promise..
    You can do this and we will be here for you!
    Bette



    NoONE
    No one
    Needs to start with 8 mg of sub
    That is insane!
    Last edited by Anonymous; 07-14-2016 at 11:17 AM.
    Ming23 likes this.

  9. #9
    Irishgirl555 is offline Member
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    Hi Winters! You definitely want to make sure you are at a 26 on the cows sheet before taking any bupe...the time to get to a 26 varies by person...for me it was 16 hours but I was taking oxys...my doctor started me at 4mg and then 2mg 3 hours later and 2mg 3 hours after that, for a total of 8mg the first day...then the next day I took 8mg and another 8mg 8 hours later for a total of 16mg...I was on 20mg for about 4 years and am now down to 1.5mg...now, about the letting the pill dissolve for 10 min and spitting the rest out...you let the entire amount disolve under your tongue...some people spit out the saliva when on suboxone but since you're starting on bupe, I don't think you need to worry about spitting anything out...I could be wrong but I've never spit...I was on bupe for 4 and a half years and just recently switched to suboxone...you can definitely give it a try this month and see if you reach a 25 on the cows sheet before going back to work...and if you don't get to a 26 stay on the methadone until you have more time off work...you have to be in withdrawal before taking the bupe...the amount of bupe needed varies from person to person but 24mg might be too high...just listen to your body...I hope this helps some :-)

  10. #10
    dwinters77 is offline New Member
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    thanks all, my fear is he is Giving me more medicine to maybe offset the withdrawals or maybe because he doesn't know??? I have no idea. I was going to wait 3 full days and see how I feel. i have the prescriptions he gave me. I haven't filled them yet. what I was thinking is postpone the transition for 3-4 weeks until I can get 2-3 days off from work in August. (hoping my psy doc won't get mad that I backed out due to fears) then talk to him about my fears of the dosage (24mg in 1 day seems like a lot from what I've read). it is a 7 day prescription. I did ask him about PW's and he said that if I follow his plan I wouldn't have any issues. my fear is you know doctors, they don't like people questioning their actions, but he knows I am petrified as I was literally shaking in his office yesterday. I am supposed to get my 2 week take out from the MD clinic tomorrow AM. if I don't show I am back to going daily which I can't do.
    if I wait to move to sub on an odd week from my MD place, if the subs don't work for me then I can go back to the MD place and pick back up.
    does that seem logical? I have been seeing this dr for 3 months. he told me when I spoke to him in the beginning that I might have to be on something for the rest of my life. I don't want that. I'm 39 and I don't want this in my life forever

  11. #11
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    There will always be something in the way..
    I say go for it..

    The big dose does not push you through the precipitated withdrawals that is just not true!


    The subs will work for you..

    They work if you do it right!
    It is so much better than methadone..

    Everything that I hated about methadone
    Was not even an issue with sub.

    You will probaly not even feel bed till the 4 or 5 th day
    Because of methadone a half life..
    So maybe you could schedule those days to be
    . Your days off.

    Idk
    But I do know I put it off for 10 years

    Because of feR
    It was he best think I ever did!


    Bette

  12. #12
    Ming23 is offline Platinum Member
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    Dwinters
    24 mg in one day is an insanely high dose that only someone w No sub experience would prescribe. An 8-hour online course doesn't really inform the doctor of the realities of sub use.
    Like Bette says, we've been in your shoes. Doctors everywhere over-prescribe sub. In fact, the 2-week prescription of sub that my doctor initially gave me was not only enough for my 4-month taper, i have left over foils!
    What about going into hospital to induct since you don't have enough time off work to get to the 26 on Cows sheet?
    Precipitated withdrawals suck big time and we're trying to help u avoid this experience.
    Next month will bring its own issues & there will rarely be a convenient time to switch over. Hence my suggestion about doing this in 3 days in hospital. Worked for me and Bette too.
    If not an option for you, then u must just cease taking all meds in preparation of the switch. This can take a while. One of our members needed 90 hours without his methadone before he successfully reached 26. This man had not one but two experiences of prec wd from taking sub too soon. Don't make the same errors as we did!
    Up to you of course. You've made the right decision to quit. Now let's put this plan into action. Here to help...
    Last edited by Anonymous; 07-16-2016 at 08:57 AM.
    Iluv2smile likes this.

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