12 doctors weighed in:
How long after taking methadone can I be switched to suboxone?
12 doctors weighed in

Dr. K. Olson
Psychiatry
4 doctors agree
In brief: Methadone transition
Of course the risk is that with longer-acting opiates ( Methadone being one) there will be withdrawal precipitated with the transition to suboxone.
It has an opiate antagonist in it - which makes the idea of abusing opiates much more unattractive (in addition they will provide no euphoria). Typically patients are encouraged to be in full withdrawal before switching over to the suboxone, ? 3 days.

In brief: Methadone transition
Of course the risk is that with longer-acting opiates ( Methadone being one) there will be withdrawal precipitated with the transition to suboxone.
It has an opiate antagonist in it - which makes the idea of abusing opiates much more unattractive (in addition they will provide no euphoria). Typically patients are encouraged to be in full withdrawal before switching over to the suboxone, ? 3 days.
Dr. K. Olson
Dr. K. Olson
Thank
Dr. Einar Ottestad
Pain Management
3 doctors agree
In brief: Depends
You have to wait until you are in significant withdrawal, maybe a day or two depending on dose and time of use of methadone.
A scale called cows scale can help guide when the objective signs of withdrawal are sufficient for suboxone. The risk with taking suboxonw before withdrawal is inducing a terrible, instant withdrawal as suboxone kicks Methadone out of the receptors instantly.

In brief: Depends
You have to wait until you are in significant withdrawal, maybe a day or two depending on dose and time of use of methadone.
A scale called cows scale can help guide when the objective signs of withdrawal are sufficient for suboxone. The risk with taking suboxonw before withdrawal is inducing a terrible, instant withdrawal as suboxone kicks Methadone out of the receptors instantly.
Dr. Einar Ottestad
Dr. Einar Ottestad
Thank
Dr. Jeff Blixt
Addiction Medicine
3 doctors agree
In brief: 3-4 days
Because Methadone is long acting and suboxone requires that a person be in moderate withdrawal it takes longer. Taking suboxone sooner risks what is called "precipitated withdrawal" this happens because the active ingredient Buprenorphine only partially stimulates the opiate receptor, if to much Methadone is still there it "kicks it off".
Once in withdrawal however it occupies an empty receptor.

In brief: 3-4 days
Because Methadone is long acting and suboxone requires that a person be in moderate withdrawal it takes longer. Taking suboxone sooner risks what is called "precipitated withdrawal" this happens because the active ingredient Buprenorphine only partially stimulates the opiate receptor, if to much Methadone is still there it "kicks it off".
Once in withdrawal however it occupies an empty receptor.
Dr. Jeff Blixt
Dr. Jeff Blixt
Thank
Dr. Gregg Albers
Addiction Medicine
2 doctors agree
In brief: Switching
Why switch? Both are addictive and have withdrawal symptoms.
Methadone is longer acting, and suboxone has less withdrawal which is why it is used for all opioid withdrawal, including addition to methadone. The object is to get off comfortably with tapering doses, till the drug is out of your system. That is the goal, not switching.

In brief: Switching
Why switch? Both are addictive and have withdrawal symptoms.
Methadone is longer acting, and suboxone has less withdrawal which is why it is used for all opioid withdrawal, including addition to methadone. The object is to get off comfortably with tapering doses, till the drug is out of your system. That is the goal, not switching.
Dr. Gregg Albers
Dr. Gregg Albers
Thank
Dr. Byron Law-Yone
Psychiatry
1 doctor agrees
In brief: At least 24hrs...
Decease dose of Methadone slowly to 30mg daily and then when you are having fairly obvious opioid withdrawal symptoms about 24hrs or more after stopping Methadone start suboxone 2mg - 4mg dose.
If this is attempted earlier and the Methadone is still not fully detached from the opioid receptors suboxone will precipitate pretty bad opioid withdrawal symptoms.

In brief: At least 24hrs...
Decease dose of Methadone slowly to 30mg daily and then when you are having fairly obvious opioid withdrawal symptoms about 24hrs or more after stopping Methadone start suboxone 2mg - 4mg dose.
If this is attempted earlier and the Methadone is still not fully detached from the opioid receptors suboxone will precipitate pretty bad opioid withdrawal symptoms.
Dr. Byron Law-Yone
Dr. Byron Law-Yone
Thank
Dr. SG Erman
Family Medicine
In brief: Not Here
This is a complicated question which requires the input from an a physician experienced in such things.
There is no easy answer. It can be anywhere from 48 hrs to 1 week, depending on many things. Do not try it youself.

In brief: Not Here
This is a complicated question which requires the input from an a physician experienced in such things.
There is no easy answer. It can be anywhere from 48 hrs to 1 week, depending on many things. Do not try it youself.
Dr. SG Erman
Dr. SG Erman
Thank
Get help from a real doctor now
Dr. Vikram Patel
Board Certified,
33 years in practice
936K people helped
Continue
108,000 doctors available
Read more answers from doctors