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PostPosted: Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:14 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 2:30 pm
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Hi everyone,

I found this forum a while back and have been reading and reading. I finally found a place where people like me share their experiences and knowledge about taking Bupe, and the road of recovery. I need some advice and am hoping some of you can help me.

I had an Oxycontin addiction that ended up with me snorting about 300mg a day. This went on for about 6 months, with the daily amount ever increasing until I was at the 300mg a day level. I finally got myself to an addiction doctor. I was lucky and found one that is VERY knowledgeable about Buprenorphine. She is a very strong advocate of its use, and even gives lectures and seminars to other physicians about it.

After induction, I was put on 16mg a day and stayed on that dose for almost 6 months. In that time I got clean and worked hard to turn my life around. I was offered a great job which I accepted. My life has gotten so much better since the day I gave in and got help.

Here is my dilemma. The job I accepted requires that I relocate to a foreign country for about a year. The country I am moving to [Singapore] does not approve of Buprenorphine for treatment of opiate addiction. It is classified as a 'banned substance" right up there with heroin and cocaine. Penalties for possession of it are extremely severe. They do have a provision to allow a traveler on Bupe to enter the country with a personal supply, if approved on an individual basis, and for not longer than 2 weeks.

There is no way around this so my doctor and I have agreed that it is time to start tapering. I am not scheduled to move there until January of 2011 and possibly not until March. So, I have between 3 and 5 months to completely stop taking Bupe. I am quite worried as I have been on what I consider a pretty large does [16mg] for 7 months. The doctor said to reduce to 12mg for 2 weeks [I am one week into that and OK], then to 8mg. She said I would not feel the reduction to 12mg but I may feel the reduction to 8mg.

She agreed that the tapering gets harder as the dose gets smaller but she seems unconcerned about the time I have to do it or getting "stuck" in the 4mg - 2mg range. I have read a lot of posts and stories about people who can't get past 4mg or 2mg a day. Some just decide [with their doctor's consent] to just take it for the rest of their lives. I am really worried about the time I have to taper from 16mg to 0, and I want at least several weeks at 0mg before I get on that airplane.

My doctor said she has treated 100s and 100s of patients and tapered them off of Bupe and has had maybe a few that had trouble tapering. She acts like it is nothing to worry about at all. Well its my body, my recovery, my career and my life and I am plenty worried.

Any advice is very much appreciated.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:26 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 12:55 pm
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Location: Leesburg, FL
Hi Countdown and welcome to the forum. I hope you are able to find what you're looking for here and get some support as well.

It sounds like you have a terrific doctor who is giving you accurate information. I agree that you likely won't feel it going down to 12 mg. You MIGHT not even feel the drop from 12 to 8. Just allow your body to adjust to each drop before dropping again.

Keep in mind that the people that your doctor is saying had no trouble tapering are NOT sitting at home bitching on an online forum. They are out there being happy and living their lives. The miserable ones make way more noise than the satisfied ones.

You've got a good amount of time to taper off. I think you'll be OK. Oh, and congratulations on the new job!

-As I have grown older, I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.

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