Can You Safely IV Zubsolv Or Suboxone?

needle or syringe on a table - Can You Safely IV Zubsolv Or Suboxone?

Zubsolv and Suboxone are two medications commonly used in the treatment of opioid dependence (also called opioid addiction or opioid use disorder).

Some people wonder whether you can use these medications intravenously. However, these drugs were not designed for injection.

Can You Safely IV Zubsolv Or Suboxone?

In search of a high, some people crush Zubsolv or Suboxone tablets into a powder. They then mix the powder with liquid and inject it into their veins.

According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), this practice is not safe. That’s because the drugs were not designed to be injected.

In addition, the practice will not get you high, as the naloxone in the drug will immediately cancel out any pleasant effects from the buprenorphine.

What Are Zubsolv & Suboxone?

Both Zubsolv and Suboxone contain a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone.

Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist. That means it activates the same opioid receptors as other opioids, including heroin and oxycodone. However, it activates them much less strongly. As a result, it can ease opioid withdrawal symptoms and cravings without making you feel high or causing addiction.

Naloxone is an opioid antagonist. That means it blocks the effects of opioids. It’s meant to further prevent buprenorphine from getting you high.

Zubsolv comes as a sublingual tablet. Suboxone comes as a sublingual tablet and a sublingual film. All of these formulations are meant to dissolve in the mouth.

Buprenorphine/naloxone products are not the only medications used to treat opioid addiction. Other options include methadone, which is an opioid agonist like buprenorphine, and naltrexone, which is an opioid antagonist like naloxone.

Dangers Of Injecting Zubsolv Or Suboxone

People who inject Zubsolv or Suboxone may experience unpleasant side effects, including:

  • blurred vision
  • constipation
  • headache
  • stomach pain
  • back pain
  • trouble sleeping

Immediate Withdrawal Symptoms

Also, because naloxone blocks the effects of opioids, injecting Zubsolv or Suboxone can cause immediate withdrawal symptoms in people who are opioid-dependent. These symptoms may include:

  • anxiety
  • irritability
  • sweating
  • muscle aches
  • nausea and vomiting
  • diarrhea

Opioid Overdose

Injecting Zubsolv or Suboxone may also increase your risk of opioid overdose, especially if you mix the medication with other central nervous system depressants such as alcohol or benzodiazepines. Common symptoms of opioid overdose include:

  • extreme drowsiness
  • slowed or stopped breathing
  • slowed or stopped heartbeat
  • low blood pressure
  • pale, clammy skin
  • bluish fingernails and/or lips
  • vomiting
  • loss of consciousness

If you or someone you know experiences these symptoms, call 911 right away. When left untreated, an opioid overdose can be life-threatening.

Other Health Risks

Other potential risks of injecting Zubsolv or Suboxone include skin or vein damage, blood clots, and infection at the injection site. Also, if you share needles, syringes, or other injection equipment, you face a high risk of infectious diseases like HIV and hepatitis C.

Are Zubsolv Or Suboxone Addictive?

Compared to other opioids (or opiates), Zubsolv and Suboxone pose a very low risk of addiction. However, that risk increases if you inject the drugs (or use them in any other manner not recommended by your prescribing healthcare provider).

A person who is addicted to Zubsolv or Suboxone may:

  • feel unable to stop using the drug
  • need increasingly higher or more frequent doses to feel the desired effects (also called tolerance)
  • experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms when they don’t use the drug (also called physical dependence)
  • avoid family and friends
  • fall behind at work or school
  • lose interest in activities once enjoyed
  • experience frequent mood swings

Opioid Addiction Treatment

If you or someone you know displays these symptoms, seek help at a drug abuse treatment program. In these programs, behavioral health professionals help people regain control over drugs. They offer services such as:

  • medical detox, in which doctors help you avoid or decrease withdrawal symptoms as you become drug-free
  • mental health counseling, in which a therapist helps you manage drug cravings and any underlying mental health concerns that may have contributed to your drug use
  • support groups, in which you can discuss your experiences and coping skills with other people in recovery

To learn more about drug addiction treatment options, please reach out to a Recovering Champions specialist. Our outpatient treatment programs provide personalized, evidence-based care to help you or your loved one stay healthy.

Written by
Recovering Champions Editorial Team

Published on: October 20, 2022

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This page does not provide medical advice.

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