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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2015 9:36 am 
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I will be doing some reading today about taper methods but am curious if it's plausible to get off Subutex while still working? I just started a great new job and also suffer from Lupus and need to accrue as many days as possible for flares.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2015 10:21 am 
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Hi NY, I have no experience with tapering below 4mgs and from what I have read that is when it can start to get tricky. However, I have read that with a very slow taper, you can eliminate most of the really tough symptoms. I know there are many taper methods out there and a section here about tapering as well. I am sure people with much more information will respond soon. Good luck and please keep us informed as to how you are doing!


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2015 9:46 pm 
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I've had literally a couple people taper while working-- but they both had 'white collar' jobs where they could set their own hours, and coast during the 7-10 days when things were bad.

I tell my patients that they need a week off work to get through the detox process. The main advantage to being off work is that I can prescribe a benzo, like clonazepam... which makes the clock move much more quickly.

Tapering off buprenorphine while working can be done... just like some people can run a mile in 4 minutes. Both require a person who is extremely motivated. Can YOU do it? Maybe--- or maybe not. My general recommendation is to use FMLA to get off work for 1-2 weeks-- and stop buprenorphine entirely starting a couple days before FMLA starts.

Good luck!


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 19, 2015 12:59 am 
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Thanks for the response Doc. I too have a "white collar" career. As I had mentioned, I recently just landed this amazing opportunity, leaving my last company which I had been with for 9 years. Unfortunately, I won't be eligible for FMLA until I've been employed there for a year which is 11 months away. Also, while I'm lucky to live in a state that pays disability during FMLA, it would be very rough financially as a single mother with a son in full time child care.

My new employer is still in "crisis" mode after a new system implementation (which is why they brought me on) but hopefully by the time I've tapered low enough (I'm currently at 6mg daily) to stop completely, we will be at a point where I can work from home during that time.

It's good to hear that you have seen others do it. It gives me hope!


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 19, 2015 3:14 am 
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I was able to do it. I had/ have a desk job/ my own office situation. I jumped on a Saturday at somewhere between 1.5 and .5. I had tapered down to 1.5mgs then the last day only took .5.. Then nothing. I recommended tapering further if you can. Anyway, I jumped on Saturday and only took that following Monday off. I was back to work the rest of the week. I was a mess. Freezing. Sneezing, droopy from the "comfort meds". But I pulled through. I brought in a personal cappuccino machine that I would have mainlined if I could. I needed every ounce of energy possible and it helped. Also brought in a little heater that I kept under my desk.

For whatever it's worth, I have a desk job but have huge responsibilities, and have to have to mental A game going at all times. I did not have any screw ups despite my emotional and physical state being in shambles. Lol

It's possible.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 19, 2015 8:20 pm 
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Yes it can be done. And at the very least it means you'll be able to come on Suboxforum and tell people that you worked through your Sub detox. Respect.

I went to a long term therapeutic community where a large portion of residents on Sub (and to a lesser degree methadone) were reduced down to 2mg or 1mg over a couple of months, then jumped off. They were still expected to be out of bed by 7AM with their room immaculately clean, clean the whole rehab facility with the other residents at 7:30, and work in the fields (raking, weeding, turning compost, planting vegetables etc) from 9AM to 5PM. This was done no matter how bad the residents were detoxing. And because we weren't sleeping at night, we also stayed up overnight helping the nightworkers vacuum, wash dry and fold tea towels, do dishes etc. So work was done around the clock while detoxing.

It can be done. Uncomfortable yes. Punishing yes. But with the right attitude you can do it.


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