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I have detoxed from heroin twice with Buprenex. These were after two fairly short (2 -3 month long) relapses. The first time I did not experience much, if any, withdrawal. It was beautiful. The treatment period was about fifteen days. I used 3-4 vials per day the first 3 days, then 2 vials per day for a few days, then one vial per day for a few days, and finally stopped when I was down to less than 1/2 a vial in a day.

A year later when I relapsed again, the Buprenex did not work as well on me. I injected nearly seven of the 5mg vials the first 12 hours alone, until I felt normal, and because I used so much the first day my ninteen vials lasted me only 5-6 days. I figured that was enough but the Buprenex itself had some nasty side effects for over a week which included chills, WEAKNESS, extreme insomnia and night sweats. Of course some of these may have been from the heroin but I think it's unlikely to have chills and sweats ten days after stopping a relatively mild heroin habit (about 1/4 gram a day for 2 months).

So, in short, Buprenex EASES the symptoms of withdrawal but does not necessarily eliminate them. Also, there is no telling how much you may need depending on the severity of your habit.

I hope never to go back to the horrible drug, but if I do I have not found anything better than Buprenex to kick with. I think this is it for me. Before my two relapses I had ten years clean and sober and in between the relapses was clean a year, so I do know how to stay clean. Maybe it is just as well that this Buprenex W/D was NOT painless. It will make me think twice about EVER using again.

Good luck.

And methadone is not the answer either. It's just substituting one form of opiate for another.

I would like to add that the reasons I relapsed were simply -- I was not going to N.A. or "Smart Recovery" meetings regularly and I was not in contact with my N.A. Sponsor. When I work a good program of Recovery I do not relapse. So the fault was mine...we heroin addicts CAN stay clean for good.
Yes, the vials are the .3mg ones. I was mistaken when I said they were 5mg. I injected them intramuscularily most of the time, although I did try intravenous a few times (no real rush; about the same effect).

I just want to emphasize that even after the Buprenex is stopped completely there can be SOME withdrawal symptoms (POSSIBLY night sweats, decreasing nightly, chills during the day, WEAKNESS, some mild stomach upset) and DEFINITELY severe insomnia for up to two weeks. I found that frequent long HOT showers (or a steam room or wet sauna if available) really helped me get through this period. I was taking something like ten hot showers a day for the first few days off Buprenex.

The first time I got off with the Buprenex I used prescription sleeping pills for at least a week after cessation of Buprenex. This last time my N.A. Sponsor would not hear of it, and I didn't have any anyway, so I just dealt with the insomnia. It DOES get better, and in all honesty the insomnia seems to last fewer nights if one AVOIDS the sleeping pills. I used warm glasses of milk and some herbal tea for a week or so, and then found that I could sleep without anything.

EXERCISE -- this will also help you get through the uncomfortable period after cessation of Buprenex sooner. This does not necessarily mean heavy weight lifting and aerobic exercise at the gym, although within a week that is what I was forcing myself to do (remember though that I was lifting before my relapse and in top health, and my relapse was only 2 - 3 months). But it does mean SOME form of exercise. The first week after cessation of Buprenex, I went for walks. This was about all I could bring myself to do. After a week of that, I crawled back into the gym.

It pretty much took me as long as the period I was out there to get back to my normal strength and stamina. Thank God I was able to regain it this time, and pull out of this relapse. I'm not getting any younger, and this last relapse, as short as it was, took a lot out of me.

That is something else to consider and another good reason to get clean as soon as possible -- none of us is getting any younger. In my first year of "chipping" I could get fairly strung out, then get in a car, drive up to the mountains, wake up the next morning, drink a few glasses of orange juice, and hit the ski slopes doing cold turkey and feel better by the end of the day. NO LONGER. First off, I can no longer "chip" and every relapse seems harder and harder to recover from. As I said, I never want to tear myself down like that again, and I never want to be sick again, God Willing. ALL IS WELL -- today.





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