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Detoxing off methadone and switch to Suboxone. How long do you have to stay on sub b4 starting detox from that?

    I'm getting pretty close to the 30mg mark on Methadone and want to jump to Suboxone, then finish my detox on that. I do not want to do any sort of maintanence on sub, just finish my detox. Has anyone done this, and if so, how long did you have to stay on Sub, before starting the detox off of that? If I stay on methadone, @ this dose it's gonna be another year on this crap if I don't want to kill myself with the w/drawals of detoxing too fast. Plus, I hate the drive EVERY day. If you're on ANY psych meds at my clinic, prescribed or not, you don't get takehomes, and I'm tired of driving in the snow every winter.
    I'd like to do something like the 21 day detox. Maybe even drag it out to a month on the low doses. Sounds a lot better than another year, (that would make it 10yrs if I stay). I understand the most important thing is to walk off on a very low dose, (1/4mg).
    I'd also like to hear peoples experiences of doing this, like, what dose did you start at when switching from methadone to sub? I know everyones different, but if I could get some #'s, I'd have a general idea of what it's gonna cost me. I know the dr's initial fee plus the by-weekly fee to see him, but I don't know how much the med will cost until I get an idea of my daily dose.
    Thanks, in advance.
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Hi~  First,I have no experience with these two drugs but I wanted to reply to your post.

Usually,the Sub doctor you see designs the plan. It's an entire program of sub,therapy,couseling etc...

I do know you need to be a bit lower on the Methadone and in withdrawals before you can begin sub.

There are a few folks who have a lot of experience in this area. I'll put some messages out to them for you.

Also,have you looked in the health pages,upper right of this page?  There's a lot of info in there on this subject. Do some research on your own so you can make a good decision here...

Vicki
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Avatar_m_tn
    I've done as much research as I could find, but I need to hear from REAL people and their experience doing this. Unfortunately, I can't find answers to this specific question.
    I do know the basics, like, you need to be 30mg or lower to start Suboxone and you need to feel w/drawals to get on it, (usually 3 days off methadone), but what I don't know is what most people who just want to continue their detox start off with as a dose. I read about the 21 day detox on the main page on the lower right-hand side, (that's what got me thinking, but again, that's just one person giving their advice on how to do it. 21 days just seems REAL quick compared to detoxing from methadone). Is a 5-8mg starting dose normal for someone coming off 30mg of methadone? I'm trying to get an idea of the cost. Either I spend another $5,200.00 and another year travling to the "clinic", or spend "X" amount of money, and get off this sickening ride in a month or two. I know the ride doesn't stop when the mg's end, but I hear the w/drawals end sooner than coming off methadone. Talking to friends that are on methadone but were on Sub the first time they quit, they so wish they didn't get onto this horrible drug, (methadone), but they went straight from heroin to Sub, so I can't use their experience as an example. I did have a friend detox off of 8mg of Suboxone because his dr. got arrested for having too many patients. He said it took 15 days of hell on his moms couch, then another month of minor w/drawals. But like I said, I can't use him as an example. I'm hoping to hear from someone who did what I'm thinking of doing. I still have 1 1/2 months before I can even see a dr., so I'm trying to load up on as much real info first.
    I'm just looking for the lesser of two evils, not an easy way out, because there isn't one. Whenever I hear of a med that's considered methadone "lite", I'm all ears. I've been detoxing for almost two years from this stuff and am running out of $ and time with my father. I would like to spent as much time DOING stuff with him instead of being sick and only being able to do stuff real early in the a.m. after getting dosed. He's a worn-out 75yrs old with COPD. I'd just like to go fishing or play golf, but not when the sun hasn't come out yet.
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Avatar_f_tn
Oh boy...I hear you loud and clear. My only experience is with the folks here on the forum. Overall it seems to me that BOTH drugs are a bear to get off of.  Not that anything is EVER easy but with the long half life etc...it's hard.

I sent a message to Henry for you. He is the premiere sub guru in my opinion,very bright guy,and just tapered off sub. I think he's been clean for over 2 months now.

Do you have a sub doctor lined up?  Do your checking on him/her also. Some are only in it for the money.    I think your plan is well thought out.  It's hard to know what mgs. you'd start out at because every doctor tweaks the sub a little differently.  I've read somewhere between 8 and 12 is the average. And you really need to get down to slivers when tapering. But you probably know that.

I wish you the best.  I totally understand about your Dad. My Mom is the same age with the same condition. She lives 2,000 miles away from me and I just got back from a 2 week visit with her. It was precious!!
Vicki
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    I appreciate that. Thank you, Vicci. I do not have a dr. now, but a couple months ago, I was below 30mg,(long story of why I had to go back up), but during that time I sent out an e-mail to dr's in my area, looking for one to take me, and within 5 minutes I must have had 10 choices w/in 25miles of my house, (lucky I live near Boston). 50mile round-trip isn't so bad when my daily one is almost 40miles. I also hear that, because they DO give you more than a days worth of pills, when you do get low, you can use either a pill-splitter or rasor to cut off tiny pcs., to really work your way down, so the w/drawals are as easy as possible.
    That's nice to here you having a good time with your mom. These are, I think, the best times, age-wise, because both people are all grown-up and you can understand that not only are they your parents, but also just regular people, trying to do the best they can at living life, and I'm sure mine want their son back, just like I want to be back. For some reason, methadone kinda zapps all your feelings, and you just walk around in a haze. Hard to explain, unless you've been on it.
    Yeah, we had a dr. that use to meet people behind a bread store, called Pannera Breads, and all his patients used to call him Panerra Tony because he would write prescriptions on the hood of his car. Another reason I want off the clinic, my councilor not only had heard of him, it sounded like he knew him, and actually tried to stand up for what he was doing, saying he wasn't making any $ doing it. That's hard to believe, but even so, he go arrested and left my friend to detox off 8mg's of Suboxone. So he MIGHT have not made $, but he sure left my friend between a rock and a hard place.
   Thank you again.  
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Hi well I hav actually done what ur trying to do. I got to to 17mgs of methadone and went to suboxone. After I was on subxone for 1 week I started tappering after that. I did it slow and was off of it n 3 months. I made the jump at 2 mgs and the only withdrawls I experienced was a lil tired and a lil weak for the first 4 days. I could deal with that. It was nothing compared to what I went thru when I ws tapering off of methadone. That was h&ll! I wish I had started on the subxone to begun with. Today i'm at 44 days clean and sober. Thanks to the suboxone! If u have ne questions let me know!
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Oh and another thing is I made sure I stayed on sub long enough to make sure the methadone was completely out of my system.
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Hey Steve,

I seem to always post these notoriously long posts, so bear with me here. :-P

It sounds like you have done your homework... smart move.  Educate yourself as much as possible as the one downfall with sub, is the uneducated doctors giving misinformation and false hope.

I was on MMT for over 7 years at doses well over 300mgs daily. I had a hell of a time coming off even after tapering low, and knew I needed another option, hence my switch to sub.

My docs policy was to decrease to a dose of 30mgs of methadone or lower to being suboxone induction. So you are good to go there.  You will also have to start withdrawals before inducing onto the sub, but Im sure you already know this too. I personally waited 72 hours, but I have found that you only need to be in mild to moderate withdrawals before inducing, no need to cause unnecessary suffering.  Use the clinical opiate withdrawal scale to guage your wd stage.

I began my sub treatment at 16mgs. Might be overkill, might not, but thats what worked for me.  I found I was quickly able to decrease my dose with no discomfort at all after about 3 weeks.

I stayed on sub treatment for 2 years, but that was only because I wasnt truly ready to quit everything. I worked a strong recovery program while in sub treatment, and I truly believe this was the key to my success. Meetings, counseling, the works. The dual approach to treatment is what sub was designed for!

I stopped sub at 3mgs over 80 days ago and am doing great.  The wd wasnt fun, but it was completely tolerable. I continued working, got up and did my daily routine every day...  The wd's did last longer than other opiates, but compared to methadone were substantially milder and shorter.  With methadone wd I was SICK SICK SICK!!! Couldnt get out of bed, puking, the works.  With sub wd, you just kinda feel like hell- but not sick.

I would say the insomnia lasted the longest which started to get better at around the 30 day mark. After the first 10 days of detox, I was beginning to see improvements daily.

I dont regret my decision to switch to suboxone at all... I feel great today.

Im sure I left some stuff out of this post, as I am just exhausted. (Just came off a long flight) Im in Kuwait for the next few days, but feel free to shoot me a PM if you have any questions that I can help you out with!

Henry
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I also forgot to add- Regarding the medication cost.

Suboxone was running me about $600-700 a month for the meds on the 2mg tablets when I was at 12mgs a day.

If you can get the doc to write you a script for subutex, there is a generic form available now for the 8mg tablets. Most pharmacies stock it for around $3 a pill. Still costly, but substantially cheaper as opposed to name brand sub, or even methadone!

Suboxone should be available in a generic soon, but the pharm companies are having a hard time getting the naloxone in the generic form to dissolve complately.

There is also in the works a Buprenorphine strip, similair to those listerine strips. This is a little far out, but more info should be available soon.

And then there is the Probuphine Implant.  A lot of controversy on this one, and not an option I could reccomend in good faith!

Henry
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Thanks Henry. You ALWAYS come through when I give you a shout. I think your post will help Steve very much.    Take care with our soldiers!!!   Big hug to you!!
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Avatar_m_tn
    Vicci and Henry, thank you so much.
Massave props to both of you. I can't thank you enough for your info. It gives me the definitive decision to go onto Suboxone. As I said before, when I got down to 30mg, I pretty much had drs. knocking at my door, so I'm hopeful I can find a dr. that prescribes the generic subutex, which I have heard of. If not, it still will be cheaper and less painful than detoxing down to a dose of methadone that I can jump off from.
    I honestly don't think I will ever have a desire to use an opiate again. I have way too many memories of standing outside in a noreaster w/10 degree weather, or the clinic opening up late, so I lose overtime @ work, spending my Christmas morning at the clinic, waiting for my dose, etc. Plus the $ and pain/sickness of detoxing. Coming on this site is enough of a NA type of setting for me. I feel I can say or ask questions I most likely would not ask. Unfortunately with my anxiety, when I did go to a NA or AA meeting, I kinda sat in the back and more or less just listened. Here, there feels like no judgement is being fallen onto me, I'm just another addict looking for help.
    And Henry, if I heard the news correct tonight, we will be bringing back our soldiers at the end of the month. I hope that was right, for you and every soldier over there. Nevermind the help on this site, I thank you from the bottom of my heart that you do what you do overseas. Without people like you, I wouldn't have the luxury of being at home, on the internet. So you just remember to keep your head down. I want to make sure you are able to post here again, SOON. Good luck over there, and thank you both again.
              Steve
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Steve~  You are right...the forum is a safe place and you can be yourself here. BUT,I
need to warn you that it is only an adjunct to proper recovery treatment.  It would be wrong of me to let this go so I'm going to tell you now: You need some kind of aftercare. I promise you. We all need it.  It doesn't have to be NA. It can be one to one therapy.We
need to get to the reason why we used because it gets pretty vague down the road.We
begin to feel omnipotent and that "just one" is okay.

Of course,it's up to you. I just had to warn you,okay?  Think about it and maybe ask others what they've done.

Vicki
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Avatar_m_tn
    I thank you for caring, and you are right, I do need, and have a psychitrist and a psychologist I see monthly. It is good to be able to get stuff off your chest. My only "problem" with NA or AA is that after going to 4 different towns, and using their meetings, it just seemed to me that there was a lot of reminissing(sp), talking about all the things they did when they were either high or drunk, then at the end of the meeting they would remind you not to use. All that did for me was start thinking of who I can call to get whatever drug they were just talking about in the meeting.
    I need to be as far away from that as possible. The longer I don't think about using, the more room it leaves in my head for healthy things. I can spend that energy actually doing something rewarding like, putting on my running shoes and going for a run in the woods, or relaxing on the golf course, etc. I know they work for some people, but for me I don't need to be reminded of it. In fact, the only time drugs would come up is when I went to those meetings, which I don't need, but again, you are right, we need to find the root cause of our addiction, then work on that, which I have been for the better part of 3 years with people I finally trust. This site would be the place for me to offer and recieve advice w/out going to a meeting. That way no one is going to keep talking about the night that such and such happened, and I can't get away from it w/out walking out on someone talking. I was raised with SOME manners,lol.
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Okay...I hear what you're saying about the meetings.  I'm glad you have a therapist and it would be very bad for you to be in any situation that triggered you!!

I'm glad Henry helped with your decision. He's a great resource. Read his journal when you have a few minutes.  Just click on his screen name and you'll get to his page.
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Might i say...thank u for having the same question as me. Ive spent hours looking for an answer to whats ur looking for. Im on suboxone now 5 days off of 13 mls of methadone. I've only been on 4 mls from day one and its been fine for me. But i was under the impression from my methadone doctor (who might i add is a COMPLETE ignorant moron who knows nothing) that i could be on the suboxone for a week and then be home free from it all. Now ive researched this again and again and it doesnt make sense. The peak of the methadone wds isnt supposed to occur until approx 2 weeks in, depending on different body and different circumstances. So that makes no sense to me. That should mean that i'll be off the suboxone just in time for some nasty methadone sickness. Anybody whos had a short methadone to suboxone treatment? Or advice. Im pretty strong and i will be fine wit a little sickness, but i full blown methadone withdrawal...well i dont know if i could handle it. HELP!
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Ive spent hours looking for an answer to whats ur looking for. Im on suboxone now 5 days off of 13 mls of methadone after bein on meth for a year almost exactly. I've only been on 4 mls of suboxone from day one and its been fine for me. But i was under the impression from my methadone doctor (who might i add is a COMPLETE ignorant moron who knows nothing) that i could be on the suboxone for a week and then be home free from it all. Now ive researched this again and again and it doesnt make sense. The peak of the methadone wds isnt supposed to occur until approx 2 weeks in, depending on different body and different circumstances. So that makes no sense to me. That should mean that i'll be off the suboxone just in time for some nasty methadone sickness. Anybody whos had a short methadone to suboxone treatment?
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srry for the double post...my computers stupid
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HI we have a couple of girls that have successful sub experience I  will message them to get ahold of you one was on it quite a wile the other on only 90 days both had minimal withdrawals jumping off a 2mg look for there posts tomorrow.......Gnarly  
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Im trying to come of dope and have been in and out of many rehabs.. Almost so many that there are not many state funded who will take me any more.  I really want to get clean and i have a boyfriend whose been on methadone for a while and thinks i should go that route but i hear about how horrible the methadone withdrawal is and i don't want to switch addictions especially if its going to make me sicker when it comes time to kick, than dope would.  He starts to convince me that meth Is a good idea but i read these post and  all i hear is how horrible is it to kick. is it worth it if you can't seem to get together after 7 rehabs, but from the bottom of my soul want more than anything to get clean?? Or should i try a quick suboxen detox? The detox's near me do a 3 day detox.  Please if you have any advice on if i should start the methadone program or do anything else possible to get sober other than that, let me know
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3092482_tn?1383176848
I'm a little biased with the methadone. People who are on it seem to love it, Suboxone is the same way. I you have failed at rehab and can't seem to kick it any other way, suboxone is an option, but I would bet 3 days on subs would just give you a long enough break to be able to get high on the H again. If you can find a complete suboxone program, I mean counseling, meetings, drug tests, and a complete program of recovery. That may be a good choice, but a 3 day detox is not enough. This is only my opinion, but you need a program that will change every part of your world and how you view it. Methadone doesn't give the rush, but the post rush high is the same as Herion and that's why so many addicts love it. Start your own thread by clicking Post a Question, more people will reach out to you. Make this the last attempt. Get a plan.
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Avatar_m_tn
  I am so sorry to know that so many of us are in trouble with these dreadful drugs. i was on Norco for 10 years. I took six 10 mg per day& i was loosing everything including my mind. So goofy, I didn't fit in anywhere anymore. i did this because I had very bad emdometreos. I became a addicted & mean.
I wanted badly to be normal again & someone told me about Methadone & how successful it was for getting off Norco, that it was. Today I am addicted to Methadone it ***** i started on 44 mg per day and now down to 20 mg per day. This has been going on for nearly 3 years. I despise going to the clinic with all the toothless addicts that really don't want to get off this **** at all. Most of them are there to get the drug when they cannot find it on the street. It's just so ghetto, I want to be done. I am now learning about Sub & that sounds more humane & socially acceptable. My therapist feels that I am ready to make the switch. So I am jumping on the train I just hope that it works for me.
Their is also a treatment for those of you that can afford it, where you go into the hospital & detox through anesthetics. You are put to sleep until the methedone is completely out of your system, it takes 2 hrs, & shots to make you comfortable for 6 more days. It's cost is between 8 & 9 thousand $. They just might take insurance, I am told that the overall withdrawl (withdrawal) is a minor ful for a day or two. Sounds to good to be true Right? it works. Google ( Rapid Drug Detox ) also known as RDD. I only wish that I could afford this, I am told that you are treated very well & checked on hourly. I don't see why they wouldn't take insurance, they make plenty of $ & it is cheaper that a funeral. For those of you that are going in that direction, please tell us about your experience. Good luck & God Bless you All. Wannakicket
I can provide you with their number #1-800-225-1020.
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HI rrd does not work well with methadone it has a long 1/2 life as well as lingering symptoms that can last for months dont buy into the lye sub has worked for a lot of our members but is also tuff to detox off of there is no get out of jail free card her if you do the sub keep your dose low and get off it quicky that has worked for most with a succesful detox dont give up ther is hope after methadone I was stuck on the stuff almost 7 yrs and just tapered off it took a good 90 days to fell well again do what you think is best we will suport your decision good luck and God bless............Gnarly
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480448_tn?1403547723
Hello there!

Besides the methadone, and maybe the sub in your future, what "work" have you done on your recovery?  Do you have an aftercare plan in place?  Do you attend meetings or go to an addiction counselor?  Anything like that?  Do you have a good support system?  Have you eliminated all of your sources?

As for the rapid detox, nothing is a miracle cure.  For one, the cost is ridiculous, and if you do your homework, you can read that while it may have helped speed up the detox process, many people relapsed, because again, there was no comprehensive recovery plan in place.  Plus, there have been complications with rapid detox as well.  There are many stories of people who still had to go through withdrawals, even after the rapid detox.  Also, some pretty powerful drugs are used also.  There are some pretty big risks with that.  While I support any plan for recovery, that's not one I would ever recommend to people.  The other issue is, even though it stinks, the detox and w/d process are an important part of recovery for an addict.  

Just want to be sure that no one thinks that as long as you can afford it, it will fix all of your problems.  The truth is, while most addicts worry the most about GETTING clean, it's the STAYING clean that is the REAL struggle, and something that has to be worked on.

Good luck to you!
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I only know one person who did rapid detox from methadone and has not relapsed. He started NA meetings and found a counselor before he went in. He felt awesome for one day after he left the detox center, the second day the mental/emotional part hit hard. He almost relapsed, but he went to a meeting everyday and counseling once a week. That is what really made it work. Great points above, what kind of plan do you have for after detox or while on subs, or whatever detox plan you chose?
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We cant rely give you a time frame as each person is different; however, I just switched over and it will be 2 weeks tomorrow. I find pro's and con's, but personally, Suboxone has been better for ME! We are here to support you, and it is nice to see that we can support each other with this transition! All you can do in life is try! Good luck and God bless! Keep in touch!
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Hi again. I dont know about, I assume US? But in Canada, as long as you have proper paperwork from a psychiatrist and the clinic has all the details and information and a trusting relationship, they allow proper medications? That is hard to go in there everyday, I hated that at the beginning!
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Lobis and quadraserve Steve, I found the same thing with my taper, may I add it is 24-48 hours at at least 30 mg to switch. My clinic was 48 hours bearable. I was having same problem at first with suboxone. As I have learned it takes appr. 3 weeks from many experiences and from my own dr. and i find it gets better with time. Thank goodness for a drug plan, As I could not afford subs!!!!!! Take care and wish you both all the best!
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highballer, you're posting again to people who haven't been here for years.  I'm not sure they are still members here.
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PLEASE HELP..... IM TRYING SO HARD TO COME OFF METHADONE.... THEY STARTED ME OUT ON 25MG AND THEN I WAS MOVED UP TO 120 MG IN A MONTH I HAVE BEEN GOING SINCE NOVEMBER2012 AND I STARTED TAPERING DOWN 10MG A WEEK... GOT DOWN TO 60MG... STARTED HAVING CRAVINGS AND FAILED AND DID DOPE.... NOW IM UP TO 70MG.... IM TRYING TO FIND A WAY TO GET PUT ON SUBS.... AND HOW TO DO IT... IM SO SCARED OF WITHDRAWLS AND WHAT TO FACE WITH IT... CAN SOMEONE PLEASE HELP ME???? I NEED TO KNOW HOW TO COME OFF??? HOW MANY MGS??? HOW MANY DAYS?? HOURS??? EVERYTHING PLEASE!!!!!
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3092482_tn?1383176848
Hey Kathryn, welcome and congrats on reaching out for help. Many of us came off methadone, you will too. Please click 'Post a Question at the top of the page and start a new thread for yourself, this is really old. Until then, you tapered too fast, we can help you form you a realistic plan. Look forward to knowing you.
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480448_tn?1403547723
Please start a new thread as this one is older, and won't get as much attention.  You can do that by clicking on the orange "post a question" button on the top right of the page.

Also, if you wouldn't mind not typing in all CAPS.  It is hard to read and gives the impression of shouting or yelling.  It would be appreciated!  :0)

We'll help you as best we can!  Glad you found your way here!
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