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 Post subject: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:06 pm 
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I have been continuously on suboxone for almost 5 years. Started the worse w/d in April 2009 that I have ever had. So I went back to the doctor I had seen before. He started me on 8mg a day and that is what I have been on for years. Whenever I approached the subject of tapering he would say "well life can be stressful" and point out something I had shared I was going through. SO I continued to see this guy every other month for years.
Then last April I share with him I am finally moving out of my parents again. He offers me the suboxone free program. GREAT! So I am living on my own getting my subs for free for a year. Not really worrying about it, but then I call in October to make my next appt and I get told he retired and his partner already is treating the maximum people he legally can. GREAT! Not so happy great this time. The office refers me to a clinic that I have to be there 5:30 on a Thursday morning. Okay, I don't have to be to work until 8:30. Shouldn't be late or anything. This place was a joke! I was there for over 4 hours and this was never explained to me. There was a long line of other addicts there at 5:30. Nothing was explained to me very well, oh except that the generic pills were going to cost me 10 bucks a pill! Even when I had to pay I paid 200 for 30 instead of 300. That is street prices right? Then the "counselor" just started staring into space and at her desk and at some papers. Real slow like. I was trying to find out how much longer I would be there because I was already an hour later for work. She just started at me. I got mad. I told her I had enough subs to get through the next day and that I didn't even care if I got a pill that day.
Come to find out this woman has some sort of disease and her blood sugar was low. How would I know this? I am not a medical professional. She should have eaten breakfast if she wants to "help" people.
I finally got to leave that place. They made me take a pill, but I spit it out in my car. I seriously needed to started tapering, but there was no way I was going back after I got the full month supply.
So a long story later, today is my first day w/o. I am freezing here at work. This place is so stingy with the heat. (I call my female boss Mr Burns, she is a treat!) I am glad and thankful I have a job. I have tried detoxing w/o a job and was home alone. That is hard and I understand being stuck in your head and only thinking of the opiate, whatever it may be. I was drinking the worst opiate concoction when I finally quite in April 2009. I really don't want to go back to that place, but feeling like crap isn't fun. I want to be opiate free. I feel I have finally grown up enough emotionally and really changed my way of thinking. I try everyday to be positive and get rid of the negative.
Just wondering the experiences of others. Anyone else get off suboxone especially if you have been on it for as long as I have? I am hoping the w/d symptoms don't last too much long than a few weeks. Day one is tolerable so far. I just know when I don't get the best night of sleep, the real crappy feeling will come in. I have done this before, the only difference is this time I really want to be done with taking opiates of any kind. 8)


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 Post subject: Re: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 8:52 pm 
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I've had a number of patients stop buprenorphine or Suboxone. From my experience, there is a correlation where the longer people are on buprenorphine, the better they do. That might just be because older people tend to gain insight into consequences that younger people seem to be less aware of... but we know that people on Suboxone for one year, who stop, have a relapse rate over 90% in several studies-- and that is relapse within one year. Life is a lot longer than a year!

If you jumped from 16 mg, chance are your withdrawal will get a bit worse, before it gets better. It peaks when the blood level crosses the 'ceiling level', which usually takes a couple days for people on a full dose. I realize people have different opinions, but watching people stop buprenorphine and stop agonists, the experiences are not even close to the same. The people coming off agonists rarely make it to my office, even to get 'comfort meds'. On the other hand, I've seen many people work all the way through buprenorphine withdrawal--- complaining of feeling like crap the entire time, but making it to work. I think that we get to a point where we just feel about as crappy as we think we can handle--- and that point is worse with agonists than with buprenorphine.

I am being honest when I say that most people who stop buprenorphine relapse; I have had dozens of people insist that THEY won't be one of them, but then come back after a year, sheepishly, asking for help. On the other hand, some people have done well. The ones who do well are the people who give up ALL substances, and let go of the idea of ever taking any substance-- including alcohol-- to 'self medicate.'

You can do it if you stay angry.... anger is a good thing, and helps to keep despair away. You got about 3-4 weeks of misery, and then 4 weeks of fatigue. By spring you will be yourself again.


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 Post subject: Re: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2014 1:54 pm 
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First, your situation sucks no matter how you slice it. It sounds like you were referred to an Opioid Replacement Therapy (ORT) clinic formerly known as a methadone clinic; they probably dose methadone as well? You obviously would have been a buprenorphine patient within that setting and had potentially monthly 'take home' dosages immediately depending on the state you're in as that's how they've integrated buprenorphine into those settings, with no number caps on buprenorphine patients. That's the way it sounds to me with the multiple hour wait/intake time, the price of generic Subutex, the contact with a 'counselor,' concurrent 'counseling services' built into the fee, the whole intake process makes me guess ORT clinic.

If you want off, you want off. Anger can be a very good motivator and catalyst for success as Dr. J alluded to. Keep in mind, though, that it wasn't really your choice to get off and certainly not so abruptly. All I'm saying is check your motivation, sounds like you're housing has recently changed and I'd be curious about other aspects of your life as well. Do you feel like you're in a good, strong place to be successful without buprenorphine or was buprenorphine a big part of the reason you were successful? What other measures do you have in place, do you have and utilize a support/social system of some sort? What do you want your recovery to look like? Have you looked into different types of support groups, therapy, something/someone to remain accountable to besides yourself?

Have you looked into other private office-based prescribers in your area, wherever that may be, are there any? There's a section here where you can post that you're looking for a buprenorphine prescriber in a specific area and sometimes people have recommendations or know of prescribers in those areas. I've had some contact with various prescribers in various states, so there's options, if you think that you need some more time or at least a taper.

If the plan is to go cold-turkey, cin cin! Stay pissed at the circumstances that you have every right to be pissed about. If you find yourself slipping into territory where you're justifying using illicit opioids to 'ease the withdrawal' or substituting excessive or illicit benzodiazepines or alcohol use, however unfortunate the prescribing situation may be, it's better than getting back into the throws of active addiction to any substance, so keep your options open and when you start to feel physically and mentally better if you do go the cold turkey route, really take a look at what you want your own recovery to look like. Again, cheers and best of luck! I hope you keep us posted!

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 Post subject: Re: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:23 pm 
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Wow, didn't realize my frustrating experience back in October made me angry. I am pretty surprised that is was taken that way. So this will be my last post because if I want to be told how I am feeling I will get a boyfriend.
I am blessed because there are 10 doctors in my lovely little city that are on the suboxone website. I remember seeing on a post here how it is hard in some areas of the country to find a sub doctor so I bet a lot of people have to go to these methdone clinics.
I did call the first one on the list and do I wish that was the doctor I had been seeing all this time. They got me back on suboxone and will help me taper. I think it will be a bit easier if I can ask a professional questions during this time. I was sitting here at work and having a hard time and my job is NOT hard. I don't feel like a failure for starting it again. This is hard. So judge away and tell me how I feel. :?:


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 Post subject: Re: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:14 pm 
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Um, maybe I was way off base, but reading back I don't feel like I was.

I certainly didn't intend to 'tell you how you feel.' I know how I would feel if my prescriber retired, his partner referred me to a ORT clinic where I had the experience you described and then I cold-turkeyed it at 16mg.. that feeling would be PISSED.

I think what at least I was trying to say is that a lot of people who get off drugs and are successful at staying off remain pissed at them as a motivating factor i.e. subsux.com; not the only piece of a successful recovery, perhaps, but maybe part.

Either way, good luck in whatever you decide to do.

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 Post subject: Re: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:59 pm 
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haha, what...happened...here....twincitieshardcore, im just as confused as you.

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 Post subject: Re: Day 1 w/o suboxone
PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 2:14 am 
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rozz896, I'm not understanding the reason you think Twincities was telling you how you feel. He was just saying that when you're trying to come off sub anger can be a useful tool, so get angry!

If you want to leave that is certainly your prerogative. People who are thin-skinned and easily offended don't do very well here.

Amy

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