Summary

  • The Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 (DATA) enables qualified physicians to prescribe or dispense Schedule III, IV, and V narcotic drugs
  • Buprenorphine is a Schedule III drug that is approved for office-based treatment of opioid dependence by waivered physicians
  • Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist that is metabolized via cytochrome CYP 3A4 and interacts with cytochrome inhibitors and central nervous system depressants
  • Buprenorphine is not indicated for all populations, including patients under age 16, pregnant women, and nursing mothers
  • Buprenorphine has several advantages over methadone, including the ability to treat patients in an office-based setting, alternate day dosing, and milder withdrawal symptoms.
  • Most patients will be taking the buprenorphine/naloxone combination film or tablet, which is administered sublingually. Patients should engage in an activity that does not involve talking while the film or tablet is dissolving, which takes about 5-7 minutes (varies with brand)