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Substance Showdown: Zubsolv vs. Suboxone

Zubsolv is a new name-brand drug being used to treat opiate addiction. It is the same as its predecessor, Suboxone, in that it contains the same two drugs: buprenorphine and naloxone, and it is prescribed for the same reasons.


Drugs containing buprenorphine and naloxone are approved for treating of opiate withdrawal in people who are opiate-dependent. Buprenorphine is an opiate agonist that was originally developed to treat pain problems. Naloxone is an opiate blocker. Medications that contain both are used in addiction treatment because of the way they work: the medication binds to the opiate receptors in the brain, which is the same exact receptor that morphine, heroin and other opiates bind to. The addition of the blocker is to keep the patient from getting ‘high’ from the medication.

Substance Showdown: Zubsolv vs. Suboxone


  • Both are prescribed for the treatment of opiate dependence
  • Both contain the same two active ingredients: buprenorphine (the partial opiate agonist) and naloxone (the opiate blocker, also added in order to prevent abuse by injection)
  • Both are dissolve under your tongue (taken sublingually)
  • Both have the same duration – they are generally taken either once or twice daily

Substance Showdown: Zubsolv vs. Suboxone


  • Taste – Suboxone has a citrus taste and Zubsolv has a mint-like taste (in at least one study, people preferred the taste and feel of Zubsolv over Suboxone)
  • Size and form – Zubsolv is a very small tablet, Suboxone comes as a film
  • Absorption – perhaps one of the biggest differences as far as treatment goes, is that Zubsolv has better bioavailability, meaning that it is designed in such a way that the body can absorb it better.

Substance Showdown: Zubsolv vs. Suboxone

Because of the last aforementioned difference, another way in which Suboxone and Zubsolv differ is in their dosing. Since your body can more effectively absorb and make use of the buprenorphine in Zubsolv, the tablets contain slightly less of the active ingredients. With Suboxone tablets and films, the dosages are 2mg/0.5mg and 8mg/2mg buprenorphine/naloxone whereas Zubsolv comes in 1.4mg/0.36mg and 5.7mg/1.4mg. Though the tablet contains less medication, due to Zubsolv’s better bioavailability, your body gets the same useful amount.

Zubsolv is an “advanced sublingual tablet formulation” that “offers higher bioavailability relative to the tablet.” Basically, this means that more of the drug reaches your bloodstream, which then allow you to take a lower daily dose, because that is all you technically need.

Substance Showdown: Zubsolv vs. Suboxone

The truth of the matter is, when either Suboxone or Zubsolv is used for long-term maintenance, rather than for short-term treatment to alleviate withdrawal symptoms, you will continue to be dependent on a substance. Just like when you were using other opiates for which you are now taking (or considering taking) Suboxone or Zubsolv, you can’t simply quit cold turkey – you will also experience withdrawal symptoms. Again, these medications contain a partial opiate.

In both cases, Suboxone and Zubsolv, the medication is a prescription that is used to treat people who are addicted to opioid drugs, such as prescription painkillers or illicit drugs such as heroin. And, they are best used as part of a complete treatment program that also includes counseling and behavioral therapy in order to recover and achieve long-term sobriety.

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, or is on Suboxone maintenance or is considering Zubsolv treatment, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135.




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