PrescriptionGiant is a FREE prescription savings program that can save you up to 75% on your prescriptions with or without insurance!

Buprenorphine Injection (Pain Relief)

Actual product appearance may differ slightly.

Click the CARD below to print or take a screenshot on your mobile phone or tablet. There is no need to download another app!

If you would like to personalize your card enter your full name in the member name field below the card at this link and click the Update button.


Buprenorphine injection, commonly used for pain relief, carries several risks that users should be aware of:

  • Respiratory Depression: Like other opioids, buprenorphine can slow down breathing, especially in high doses or when combined with other central nervous system depressants like alcohol or benzodiazepines.
  • Addiction and Dependence: Buprenorphine has the potential for abuse and addiction, particularly in individuals with a history of substance abuse or addiction disorders.
  • Withdrawal Symptoms: Abrupt discontinuation of buprenorphine can lead to withdrawal symptoms, which may include nausea, vomiting, muscle aches, anxiety, and insomnia.
  • Sedation and Dizziness: Buprenorphine can cause drowsiness, sedation, and dizziness, impairing a person’s ability to operate machinery or drive safely.
  • Hypotension: Buprenorphine may cause low blood pressure, especially when standing up from a sitting or lying position, leading to dizziness or fainting.
  • Hepatotoxicity: In rare cases, buprenorphine can cause liver damage or worsen existing liver conditions. Regular monitoring of liver function may be necessary during treatment.
  • Adverse Reactions: Some individuals may experience allergic reactions to buprenorphine, such as rash, itching, swelling, or difficulty breathing.
  • Drug Interactions: Buprenorphine can interact with other medications, including certain antidepressants, antifungal agents, and HIV medications, leading to potentially dangerous side effects or reduced efficacy.

It’s crucial for patients to discuss these risks with their healthcare provider and to use buprenorphine exactly as prescribed to minimize the likelihood of adverse effects.

Why is this medication prescribed?

Buprenorphine injection is prescribed primarily for the management of moderate to severe pain. It is often used when other pain medications are not sufficient or when a patient cannot tolerate other opioids due to adverse effects or concerns about addiction.

How should this medicine be used?

The dosage and administration of buprenorphine injection depend on the individual patient’s pain severity, response to treatment, and medical history. It is typically administered by healthcare professionals in a hospital or clinical setting, although in some cases, it may be administered at home by trained individuals.

Here are general guidelines for using buprenorphine injection:

  • Dosage: The dosage of buprenorphine injection varies depending on factors such as the patient’s age, weight, medical condition, and response to treatment. It is important to follow the prescribing healthcare provider’s instructions carefully.
  • Administration: Buprenorphine injection is usually administered as an intramuscular (IM) or intravenous (IV) injection. The injection site and method of administration will be determined by the healthcare provider.
  • Frequency: The frequency of buprenorphine injections will also be determined by the prescribing healthcare provider based on the patient’s pain level and response to treatment. It is typically administered as needed for pain relief, with intervals determined by the duration of the medication’s effect and the patient’s pain severity.
  • Monitoring: Patients receiving buprenorphine injection should be closely monitored for signs of respiratory depression, sedation, and other adverse effects. Healthcare providers may adjust the dosage or frequency of administration as needed to achieve optimal pain control while minimizing side effects.
  • Duration of Treatment: Buprenorphine injection is usually prescribed for short-term use to manage acute pain, such as postoperative pain or pain due to trauma. In some cases, it may be used for longer-term pain management under close supervision by a healthcare provider.

It’s important for patients to communicate with their healthcare provider about their pain levels, any side effects they may experience, and any concerns they have about their treatment with buprenorphine injection. Additionally, patients should not adjust their dosage or stop taking buprenorphine injection without consulting their healthcare provider.

Other uses for this medicine

  • Opioid Addiction Treatment: Buprenorphine is also used as a medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid addiction. In this context, it is typically prescribed in the form of sublingual tablets or films rather than injections. Buprenorphine can help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms in individuals with opioid use disorder, allowing them to focus on recovery.
  • Anesthesia: Buprenorphine may be used as part of anesthesia for surgical procedures, particularly in combination with other medications.

What special precautions should I follow?

Special precautions should be taken when using buprenorphine injection for pain relief or any other purpose. Here are some key considerations:

  • Medical History: Before starting treatment with buprenorphine injection, patients should inform their healthcare provider about their medical history, including any history of substance abuse, respiratory conditions, liver or kidney disease, mental health disorders, and any medications they are currently taking.
  • Respiratory Monitoring: Patients receiving buprenorphine injection should be closely monitored for signs of respiratory depression, especially when initiating treatment or increasing the dosage. Healthcare providers should be prepared to intervene promptly if respiratory depression occurs.
  • Avoid Alcohol and CNS Depressants: Patients should avoid consuming alcohol and other central nervous system (CNS) depressants while taking buprenorphine injection, as this can increase the risk of respiratory depression and other adverse effects.
  • Driving and Operating Machinery: Buprenorphine injection can cause drowsiness, sedation, and dizziness, which may impair the patient’s ability to drive or operate machinery safely. Patients should exercise caution when engaging in activities that require alertness until they know how buprenorphine affects them.
  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Buprenorphine injection should be used with caution during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as it can pass into breast milk and may cause withdrawal symptoms in newborns. Healthcare providers should weigh the potential benefits and risks of treatment in pregnant or breastfeeding women.
  • Tolerance and Dependence: Prolonged use of buprenorphine injection can lead to tolerance and physical dependence. Patients should not suddenly discontinue treatment without consulting their healthcare provider, as this can lead to withdrawal symptoms.
  • Storage and Disposal: Buprenorphine injection should be stored securely out of reach of children and pets. Unused medication should be disposed of properly according to local regulations or guidelines.

Patients should discuss any questions or concerns about buprenorphine injection with their healthcare provider before starting treatment. It’s essential to follow their provider’s instructions carefully and to report any unexpected side effects or issues during treatment.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Regarding special dietary instructions for buprenorphine injection, there are no specific dietary restrictions associated with its use for pain relief. However, patients should follow a balanced diet and stay hydrated to support overall health and well-being during treatment.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If a dose of buprenorphine injection is missed, patients should contact their healthcare provider for guidance. Depending on the circumstances, the missed dose may be administered as soon as possible, or the next scheduled dose may be adjusted. It’s important not to double the dose to make up for a missed one, as this can increase the risk of adverse effects. Patients should follow their healthcare provider’s instructions regarding missed doses and any necessary adjustments to their treatment schedule.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Buprenorphine injection, like other medications, can cause side effects, some of which may be mild and others more severe. Common side effects of buprenorphine injection used for pain relief may include:

  • Nausea and Vomiting: Some patients may experience nausea and vomiting, especially when first starting treatment or when the dosage is increased. Taking buprenorphine injection with food may help reduce gastrointestinal side effects.
  • Drowsiness and Sedation: Buprenorphine can cause drowsiness and sedation, which may impair the patient’s ability to perform tasks requiring alertness, such as driving or operating machinery.
  • Dizziness: Patients may experience dizziness or lightheadedness, particularly when standing up quickly from a sitting or lying position. This side effect may increase the risk of falls, especially in elderly patients.
  • Constipation: Buprenorphine can cause constipation, which is a common side effect of opioid medications. Patients should ensure they are adequately hydrated and may need to use stool softeners or laxatives as directed by their healthcare provider.
  • Headache: Some patients may experience headaches while taking buprenorphine injection. This side effect is usually mild and temporary.
  • Sweating: Excessive sweating, also known as diaphoresis, may occur in some patients treated with buprenorphine injection.
  • Injection Site Reactions: Pain, redness, swelling, or irritation at the injection site are possible side effects of buprenorphine injection. These symptoms are usually mild and resolve on their own.
  • Respiratory Depression: In rare cases, buprenorphine can cause respiratory depression, which is characterized by slowed or shallow breathing. This is more likely to occur at higher doses or when buprenorphine is combined with other central nervous system depressants.
  • Allergic Reactions: Allergic reactions to buprenorphine injection are rare but possible. Symptoms may include rash, itching, swelling, difficulty breathing, or anaphylaxis.

It’s essential for patients to discuss any concerns or side effects with their healthcare provider. In some cases, adjustments to the dosage or treatment regimen may be necessary to manage side effects effectively. Additionally, patients should not stop taking buprenorphine injection abruptly without consulting their healthcare provider, as this can lead to withdrawal symptoms.

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

Storage and Disposal:

  • Buprenorphine injection should be stored securely at room temperature, away from moisture, heat, and light.
  • Keep it out of reach of children and pets.
  • Do not freeze the medication.
  • Unused or expired buprenorphine injection should be disposed of properly according to local regulations or guidelines. Some pharmacies or healthcare facilities may offer medication disposal programs or provide instructions for safe disposal at home.

In case of emergency/overdose

  • In case of emergency or overdose, call emergency medical services (911 in the United States) immediately.
  • Symptoms of buprenorphine overdose may include extreme drowsiness, slowed or shallow breathing, pinpoint pupils, cold or clammy skin, weak pulse, and loss of consciousness.
  • If possible, provide emergency responders with information about the medication taken, including the name, dosage, and time of administration.

What other information should I know?

  • Inform healthcare providers about all medications, supplements, and herbal products you are taking, as they may interact with buprenorphine injection.
  • Avoid consuming alcohol and other central nervous system depressants while taking buprenorphine injection, as this can increase the risk of respiratory depression and other adverse effects.
  • Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how buprenorphine injection affects you, as it may cause drowsiness, dizziness, or impair your ability to concentrate.
  • Do not share buprenorphine injection with others, as it is prescribed based on individual medical needs.
  • Follow all instructions provided by your healthcare provider, including dosage, administration, and monitoring recommendations.
  • Keep all appointments for follow-up visits and monitoring as recommended by your healthcare provider.

It’s essential to have a thorough understanding of these guidelines and to follow them carefully to ensure the safe and effective use of buprenorphine injection for pain relief. If you have any questions or concerns about your medication, do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider for guidance.

Copyright © 2023