Transition From Methadone to Buprenorphine Using a Short-acting Agonist Bridge in the Inpatient Setting: A Case Study

Jonathan Callan, Jarratt Pytell, Julia Ross, Darius A. Rastegar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

: Methadone and buprenorphine are the most common medications for opioid use disorder. Buprenorphine is often the preferred medication because of fewer drug-drug interactions and fewer regulatory barriers. For these reasons, patients often desire to transition from methadone to buprenorphine, but this can be difficult because of the risk of precipitated withdrawal. There are protocols designed to minimize withdrawal; however, these can be time-consuming or infeasible due to formulation and dosage availability of buprenorphine. We describe an inpatient transition from methadone to buprenorphine using a hydromorphone bridge over a 7-day period. This method used commonly available dosages and formulations of buprenorphine. To our knowledge, this is the first time a method has been described that transitions a patient from methadone to buprenorphine using a short-acting opioid agonist bridge and readily available opioid dosages and formulations. This case provides a viable alternative for rapidly transitioning a patient from methadone to buprenorphine that can be used as a template for an alternative method to transitions between these medications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e274-e276
JournalJournal of addiction medicine
Volume14
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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