The combination of buprenorphine HCL and naloxone HCL can help ease or prevent severe withdrawal symptoms in patients who have become dependent on opioids. This includes not just heroin and similar street drugs, but also prescription narcotics a doctor may have prescribed to treat pain. Such medications are habit-forming, and it can be debilitating for some patients to stop taking them. Buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL can help such individuals through the usually difficult process of overcoming their dependencies.
Sold under the brand name Suboxone, buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL comes as sublingual tablets or film that you place under your tongue. The tablets or film should dissolve under your tongue; you should not chew, bite or swallow them whole. Your doctor will tell you how much buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL to take and when. It is very important that you take buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL as directed by your doctor. Stopping the medicine abruptly can lead to serious withdrawal symptoms, and taking too much can be deadly.
Not everyone can take buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL safely. It is important that you discuss your current health and health history with your doctor before taking it. It is also crucial that you fully understand the risks, including the potential for interactions with other drugs. You should not drink alcohol while taking buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL, and you should keep it out of reach of children, who could die from ingesting it.
Buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL can make you feel drowsy or light-headed, and some people who take it experience mild side effects such as light headache, stomachache, constipation or vomiting. It may also interfere with sleep. Talk with your doctor if you experience these or other side effects while taking buprenorphine HCL/naloxone HCL, and know what symptoms could indicate a more serious reaction or overdose. Seek help right away for symptoms such as:
- Hives, rash or itching
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
- Pinpoint pupils
- Extreme drowsiness or dizziness
- Blurred vision
- Severe headache or stomach pain
- Dark-colored urine or pale stools
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes
- Flu-like symptoms