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Drug Alcohol Depend. 2001 Jan 1;61(2):173-81.

Thrice-weekly supervised dosing with the combination buprenorphine-naloxone tablet is preferred to daily supervised dosing by opioid-dependent humans.

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Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Vine Street Center, 1741 Vine Street, Denver, CO 80206, USA.


A sublingual tablet formulation of buprenorphine combining 8 mg of buprenorphine with 2 mg of naloxone is being targeted for use in settings where less than daily dosing strategies and/or prescription-based dispensing will likely be employed. This study determined patient preferences for, and clinical outcomes during, daily and 3-day per week supervised dosing schedules using the combination tablet. Twenty-four opioid-dependent subjects completing a 16-day baseline entered an outpatient triple crossover trial. Twenty-one days of daily dosing were compared to two different 21-day periods of 3-day per week supervised dosing: a 3-day per week clinic schedule and a 3-day per week take-home schedule in which tablets were provided to subjects to take at home on days between clinic visits. Thirteen patients completed the study. Significantly more doses were ingested under the 3-day per week schedules. Illicit drug use did not differ across conditions and 45% of urine samples tested positive for illicit opioids. Subjects 'liked' both 3-day per week schedules more than the daily schedule, and ratings of feeling 'good' were higher for the 3-day take-home as opposed to 3-day clinic condition. Almost all subjects (91%) rated 3-day take-home as the most preferred schedule. Overall, reducing clinic attendance improved medication compliance and increased client satisfaction without impacting illicit drug use.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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