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Injecting Buprenorphine tablets: A manageable risk (2006)

Injecting Buprenorphine tablets: A manageable risk (2006)

  1. Jatelka
    Heroin Addiction and Related Clinical Problems 2006; 8(4): 29-40

    Marc Reisinger


    Buprenorphine for the treatment of heroin addicts was launched on the French market in February 1996. Ten years on, more than 85,000 patients are undergoing this treatment and most reports are positive. However, it has been observed that a certain proportion of patients are using buprenorphine inappropriately. Instead of taking buprenorphine sublingually, as prescribed, these users crush tablets to inject them. This practice of injection also involves individuals not undergoing this treatment. The same problem of buprenorphine diversion and injection has been observed in several other countries, like England, Scotland, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, Finland and the Czech Republic. Given the reported substantial benefits of buprenorphine for individuals and for public health generally, it is important to analyse the problem of buprenorphine injection to get a better understanding of the origins of this problem, its incidence, consequences, causes and remedies.