Suboxone is a popular prescription medicine used for treating opioid addiction.
Unfortunately, some of the individuals who take Suboxone to get rid of opioid addiction end up getting addicted to this drug. Some users may abuse this drug to experience an intense high.
In some situations, you may want to eliminate Suboxone metabolites from your system as fast as possible. Thus, it is worth knowing how long Suboxone stays in your system’.
What is Suboxone?
First of all, Suboxone is a prescription medication that contains the active ingredients Buprenorphine and Naloxone.
Buprenorphine is a partial agonist that is beneficial for dealing with the symptoms of opioid withdrawal. The Naloxone contained in this drug is useful for reversing an opioid overdose.
Suboxone is an alternative to Methadone, another popular drug for treating opioid addiction. It has a lower potential for misuse in comparison to Methadone. It is mild and does not create an intense high like heroin or other opioids.
Currently, it is available only at methadone clinics or de-addiction treatment centers. Suboxone is a partial agonist available as a prescription medication in pharmacies.
Opioid Addiction and Drug Abuse
Opioid addiction is rampant among many people around the world.
According to research by the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, in the United States of America, more than 650,000 opioid prescriptions are dispensed daily.
According to a 2014 report published by the American Society of Addiction Medicine, over 1.9 million people in the United States have addiction problems related to painkillers alone.
To a report by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “prescription opioids are one of the three main broad categories of medications that present abuse liability, the other two being stimulants and central nervous system (CNS) depressants.”
Being an opioid, Suboxone is potentially addictive. This drug can also be abused for its intense highs.
However, Suboxone will not have much effect on those who are severely addicted to opioids. However, those who have occasionally used or never used drugs are vulnerable to becoming addicted to Suboxone or Methadone.
If you are addicted to Suboxone, buprenorphine in your system can be detected in urine, hair, or blood with the help of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS).
By knowing ‘how long will Suboxone stay in your system,’ you can find ways to deal with the withdrawal symptoms of this drug.
Half-Life of Suboxone
The half-life of a drug refers to the time taken for the plasma concentration of a single dose of the drug to be reduced to half of its original size.
The buprenorphine ingredient in Suboxone has a much longer half-life than other opioids. Buprenorphine has an approximate half-life of 37 hours.
If a dose of Suboxone takes 37 hours to reach its half-life, it will take approximately 8 days to be fully eliminated from your system.
Influencers of Metabolization and Elimination
On average, the complete elimination of Suboxone from the body takes about 9 days.
Nonetheless, Suboxone elimination from the system can vary in each person depending on a few variables specific to each user.
Here are some of the factors that influence the metabolism and elimination of Suboxone from the system:
- Genetic features
- Body mass
- Hydration of the body
- Healthy liver function
- Healthy kidney function
- Speed of metabolic rate
- Urinary pH
- Dosage (low vs. high)
- Duration of use
Metabolizing Suboxone in the liver creates metabolites that stay in the body longer than the drug. Modern drug tests can also detect these, so even after 9 days; an individual might still produce a positive test for the metabolites of buprenorphine in their system.
How Long Does Suboxone Stay in Your System?
If you are addicted to Suboxone, you may want to remove this drug’s properties from your system. You may want to know how long Suboxone will stay in your system’ for fear of its side effects or its possible interaction with other medications you use.
How long a drug can stay in your system can be predicted by determining the half-life of a drug dose.
By finding the amount of the drug that remains in the plasma, we can discover approximately the half-life of a drug.
The half-life of Suboxone is approximately 37 hours. This means that within 37 hours after taking this drug, 50 percent of its original properties will disappear from your system.
A dose of a drug that takes 37 hours to reach its half-life needs approximately 8 to 9 days for its complete elimination from the body.
Although the half-life of buprenorphine is approximately 37 hours, the liver turns this drug into metabolites known as “norbuprenorphine.” The half-life of its metabolite has yet to be discovered or tested scientifically.
It is expected that potentially effective metabolites of this drug may stay in your system for up to 2 weeks.
Naloxone, another ingredient in Suboxone, has a short half-life of fewer than 60 minutes.
All the same, the amount of time Suboxone stays in a person’s system is influenced by several factors. A person’s body weight, metabolism, drug interaction, dosage, frequency of use, and duration of drug abuse are some of those major factors.
Will Suboxone show up on a drug test?
Various drug tests can detect the presence of Suboxone in your system. More advanced drug tests are best for detecting the presence of Suboxone with higher accuracy.
Normally, urine tests are done to discover the presence of opioids via the detection of morphine. Because most illicit drugs like codeine, heroin, cocaine, and others metabolize into morphine, but Suboxone doesn’t.
In addition, Suboxone is also detectable in hair, saliva, and blood tests.
How long does Suboxone stay in your blood?
A blood test is best suited for detecting substances shortly after their ingestion. Buprenorphine, via a blood test, can be detected for only a few hours.
As per lab reports, Suboxone stays in your blood for about 2–12 hours after the last dose.
According to RxList.com, Buprenorphine has a half-life in the bloodstream of 24-42 hours, and Naloxone has a half-life of 30-81 minutes.
Typically, Suboxone abusers would use this drug at least once a day. A blood test is effective in detecting the abuse of buprenorphine on the same day of ingesting the drug.
The presence of buprenorphine in the blood can vary from person to person, depending on the person’s ability to metabolize the drug.
How long does Suboxone stay in your urine?
A urine test is the best drug testing method to detect buprenorphine in the system. Suboxone is detectable in urine within 40 minutes of ingesting it.
Buprenorphine is detectable in the urine for up to 2 weeks or more in persons using this drug in higher doses for a long period.
Usually, the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) urine testing method is most suitable for detecting this drug.
Other urine tests like liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS-MS) and cloned enzyme donor immunoassay (CEDIA) are also useful for tracing this drug.
How long does Suboxone stay in your hair?
A hair drug test is a complicated process that involves a technical analysis of hair to identify the presence or absence of drug metabolites.
This kind of hair drug test is done mostly to detect the use of illegal performance-enhancing drugs and steroids by athletes and sportspersons. A hair drug test can also be used to identify the opioid drug abuse history of an individual.
A drug test on the hair is more accurate than a urine or blood test to detect the presence of opioid drugs such as cocaine, PCP, opium, methamphetamine, and others. Drug metabolites and opiate substances can stay in the hair follicles for a year or more.
The metabolites of Suboxone in hair can be detected in hair tests for 1–3 months after cessation of use.
How long does Suboxone stay in your saliva?
Saliva testing for detecting opioid drugs is a commonly used method.
It is possible to detect the presence of Suboxone in saliva just a few minutes after ingesting the drug.
Buprenorphine (Buprenex, Norspan, or Suboxone) is traceable in the user’s saliva for 3–10 days. The presence of the opioid drug in saliva can vary from person to person depending on the dosage, duration, and frequency of using the drug.
The drug detection time for the saliva test usually starts immediately or just a few minutes after use.
The saliva test for drug detection is non-invasive and easy to administer.
The Bottom Line
Here is a quick summary of our discussion regarding ‘How long does Suboxone stay in your system?
Evidence from previous tests suggests that Suboxone can remain in your system for up to 9 days after taking the last dose.
As Suboxone contains Buprenorphine and Naloxone, each ingredient has a half-life duration. Half-life refers to the time it takes for half of a single drug dose to leave your body.
- Buprenorphine has a 37-hour half-life.
- Norbuprenorphine (a metabolite of buprenorphine) remains in the system for up to 9 days.
- Naloxone has less than a 1-hour half-life.
Lastly, Suboxone is traceable in your system via saliva, blood, urine, or hair tests.
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