Subutex is  an opioid-type medicine, which contains the active ingredient buprenorphine. Opioids act in the same way as other strong painkillers such as codeine, morphine, and heroin. Subutex works by mimicking the natural endorphins found in the brain and the spinal cord.

Side effects

The main use for the drug is it acts as a substitute for heroin. Subutex is different from methadone another heroin substitutes as the effect on the brain is not as strong. This drug should be taken orally by placing the tablet under the tongue. It’s then absorbed straight into the blood stream. If swallowed it will not work. Some of the side effects of Subutex can be, an unexpected drop in blood pressure that may result in feeling faint when standing up to quickly. Other possible side effects also include headaches, insomnia , constipation and nausea. The long term side effects are addiction. This is a highly addictive drug and can also cause overdose, which can occur if taken with other medication or alcohol.


Many people feel clearer headed  compared with methadone. It also tends to be more comfortable from which to detox. The other benefit is that it reduces cravings for heroin. This drug also contains a blocking effect. If heroin is used whilst taking subutex then the effects of the heroin are cancelled out. If you are using heroin you need to wait at least 8 hours after your last use before taking the subutex or between 24 – 36 hours after your last use of methadone. The reason for this is for it to be effective it’s necessary to have a low level of methadone or heroin in your system.


You need to be feeling slight withdrawals before starting or otherwise it can cause withdrawals to start suddenly. The first 2-3 days of taking subutex there may be uncomfortable feelings. However the craving to use heroin will not be there.  This drug can be dangerous even fatal if used with other drugs such as anti depressants, strong painkillers, tranquilizers, sleeping tablets etc.

Black market

Subutex is becoming increasingly easier and cheaper to obtain. On the black market compared with other drugs, it’s amplifying the number of addictions to this drug. Subutex was first licensed in the U.K  for treatment of opioid addiction in 1999. Studies made by the UN International Narcotics control board found that between 2000 and 2004 the consumption of subutex tripled due to the fact that subutex has become more accessible and cheaper than heroin.