Jul 18, 2023
Sublocade is a monthly injection of Buprenorphine. It releases buprenorphine slowly into the blood over a period of 4-5 months. You need to have insurance to cover the cost.

Sublocade has been around since 2017. I have given 135 Sublocade injections. The shot is given into the subcutaneous fat around the belly button every 4 weeks. The shot stings for ~ 2 minutes, but this burning resolves quickly. 

Benefits of Sublocade

  1. More consistent levels of buprenorphine, reducing chance of having withdrawal symptoms in the night.
  2. Eliminates the need to take pills every day.
  3. Eliminates chance of lost, stolen and diverted medication. 
  4. Safer around children in the home.
  5. As it lasts for 4+ months, no need to schedule vacations around Rx fill dates. 

Sublocade facts

  1. We sometimes supplement the shot with oral buprenorphine or Suboxone.
  2. You shouldn't take Sublocade while pregnant.
  3. You need to have Medicaid or other insurance to cover this expensive medication.
  4. There is no naloxone in Sublocade.
  5. Sublocade must be ordered from a specialty pharmacy, shipped to your provider, and injected in the medical office. 
  6. In my practice 60% of patients who start Sublocade continue it after 1 year. They say that they feel better on the shot.