Section 80
Chapter 79,498

Transition from Full Mu Opioid Agonists to Buprenorphine in Opioid Dependent Patients-A Critical Review

Soyka, M.

Frontiers in Pharmacology 12: 718811


ISSN/ISBN: 1663-9812
PMID: 34887748
Accession: 079497931

Methadone, a full opioid agonist at the mu-, kappa-, and delta-receptor, and buprenorphine, a partial agonist at the mu receptor, are first-line medications in opioid maintenance treatment. Transition from methadone to buprenorphine may precipitate withdrawal, and no accepted algorithm for this procedure has been developed. Current treatment strategies recommend transfer from methadone to buprenorphine predominantly in patients at low doses of methadone (30-40 mg/day). There are some reports indicating that transition from higher doses of methadone may be possible. A number of dosing strategies have been proposed to soften withdrawal symptoms and facilitate transfer including use of other opioids or medications and especially microdosing techniques for buprenorphine. The case series and studies available thus far are reviewed.

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