An in-Depth Overview of the Butrans (Buprenorphine) Patch for Pain Management

butrans dosage

The Butrans patch is a pain relieving drug from the opioid family.

It is offered in a transdermal system (a patch that goes on your skin).

For those dealing with pain management, this medication can help remedy severe pain with the added benefit of not having the typical side effects of heavy-duty narcotics

If you’ve recently been prescribed a buprenorphine patch for the pain you might have some questions about the drug’s effects and how to go about managing your dosage to avoid dependency and abuse.

In this post, we’ll look in depth at:

  • The effectiveness of the patch
  • Finding the right dosage
  • The “high” produced from the patch
  • Taking other drugs with Buprenorphine
  • Buprenorphine and Suboxone
  • Butrans Side Effects
  • Butrans withdrawal effects
  • The potential for Butrans abuse.

1.) How effective is the patch for reducing pain?

Many with chronic pain who have accumulated years worth of opiate use are often skeptical about the effectiveness of Butrans.

Yet many are surprised once they start using the patch.

For one, the patch is actually quite efficient at reducing chronic pain.

But maybe even more important for those afflicted with chronic pain, is the lack of side effects that they’re used to dealing with from other pain meds.

Medications like oxycontin, tramadol, morphine, and Percocet often leave people feeling very clouded and bogged down. Patients complain of slowly losing motivation and taking severe dips in life quality over years of painkiller use.

Buprenorphine boasts these advantages over traditional pain meds:

  • Effectively administered pain management over time – no need to re-up every 4 hours.
  • High safety profile – very little worry of overdose.
  • Unlike other pain meds, it doesn’t produce a strong incapacitated feeling.
  • Does not induce strong tolerance issues. Many users do not complain of a loss of effectiveness even after years of Butran use.

The Butran patch delivers its pain relief in small increments – in micro-grams throughout the day – so it takes a little while to build up in your system. Relief typically begins to take effect in 2 or 3 days after administration. (If you don?t feel relief within the first week, talk to your doctor and ask about upping the dosage).

If your pain is severe, it might not get rid of it entirely. But it might help more than other drugs you’ve been prescribed over the years. Also note, you probably won’t even feel many opiate-like, psychoactive effects.

2.) So what’s the right dosage for most people?

This, of course, varies, substantially.

Everyone experiences different degrees of pain and different histories of medication use and drug tolerance. So consulting your doctor will determine your correct dose, for the most part.

Also, just trial and error. There are three dosages in Butrans patches – 5mcg, 10 mcg, and 20 mcg. (At this date, there might be more.)

One thing that many people have noticed with these patches is the necessity to fine tune and get the dose just right. One person noted that they can take 0.8mg sometimes and barely get any relief, but one extra 0.2mg tablet often makes all the difference, giving them significant relief.

One nice thing about this drug is that the risk of overdose is much lower than other narcotic pain meds.

3.) How long will a single patch last for pain? Will it really work for 7 days??

Remember, the drug takes upwards of three days to come into full effect. So if you do not feel strong pain relief within the first few days of administration, just hold out. If by 5 to 7 days in you still have not found relief, you likely need to up your dosage.

That said if you’ve found the correct dosage you are likely to experience relief up until the 5th or 6th day. It’s actually less often that people will get relief from pain for the whole 7 day period that the patch is supposed to work for.

If this happens to you it can quickly prove a challenge. No one should be forced to wait for two days without any pain management before they can administer another dose.

Your best bet is to communicate this with your doctor, try to get him on board with helping you and see if you can work out more coverage with insurance and receive a more frequent dose.

4.) How strong is the “high” produced from the patch?

There are noticeably less euphoric effects from this drug when compared to common opioid medications.

Buprenorphine, as opposed to other opioid analgesics, will cause you less heaviness and grogginess. Many people even feel energized after taking the med.

So while there is not as strong of a pleasurable effect from Butrans when compared to other opiate pain meds, you will likely experience a clearer-headed experience along with adequate pain relief.

Just beware, the first two days are likely to cause you discomfort and nausea, along with lessened effects. Don’t be put off by this too early and give up on the patch. Give it time to take effect.

5.) How about taking other drugs in addition to the patch when I have breakthrough pain?

Yes, you can take breakthrough medication while on the buprenorphine patch.

Morphine, Oxycodone, Hydromorphone, and Tramadol all can be administered to add an analgesic effect for the occasional breakthrough pain, as they do not prove an antagonist to Butrans.

If you want a more technical explanation: Buprenorphine is an agonist/antagonist because it has an agonist effect on the mu opioid receptor and some antagonism at the kappa opioid receptor.

Often doctors will prescribe breakthrough meds if there is extra pain that needs to be managed (morphine and tramadol, for example) on top of the buprenorphine.

Some medications are not as safe to use while on the patch. These include many antidepressants, antihistamines, & muscle relaxers.

Talk to your doctor about any mixing of medications.

6.) Is Buprenorphine the same thing as Suboxone? That stuff that’s for treating heavy opioid users for withdrawals?

Buprenorphine uses the same opioid that is the active ingredient in Suboxone.

But, Sobozone is a bit different.

It’s mixed with naloxone (an antagonist to deter abuse by injecting) and it is typically at much higher doses (from 2mg all the way up to 32mg). Suboxone is considered a “high dose buprenorphine” while Butrans is a low dose version.

In these higher doses, it’s supposed to be helpful as a substitute for other opioids in people who have addiction problems. Many clinics administer it for this & for nearly a decade in the US.

Basically, same ingredients, but Butrans is generally used for people who don’t require the high dose treatment, yet who need round the clock chronic pain relief.

7.) What are the side effects of Buprenorphine? Should I be Worried?

Side effects will be tame compared to drugs like Percocet & Oxycotin.

There is also a respiratory ceiling effect with buprenorphine, which means it’s practically impossible to die from an overdose.

Common side effects include:

  • pain;
  • problems sleeping;
  • nausea;
  • sweating;
  • stomach pain; or
  • constipation.

More serious side effects include:

  • Allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat, swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
  • slow breathing;
  • dizziness or confusion; or
  • liver problems such as yellowing of the skin or eyes, dark-colored urine, light-colored stools (bowel movements), decreased appetite for several days or longer, nausea, or lower stomach pain.

8.) What about withdrawals from Butrans/Buprenorphine?

While not as severe as many other opiates, there are some definite withdrawals.

The onset of withdrawals typically occurs 48 hours after the last dose, peak around the third day and lasted up to ten days.

The withdrawals were similar to morphine type drugs and moderate in intensity, these include:

  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • A rapid heart rate.
  • Strong drug cravings
  • Sweating
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Abdominal (stomach) cramps

In closing

Obviously, like all drugs, it works well for some and not so well for others. This patch helps many people with pain – though not always 100%.

43 thoughts on “An in-Depth Overview of the Butrans (Buprenorphine) Patch for Pain Management”

  1. Ryan Mausten

    I’m switching from suboxone to butrans put on the first patch today. I was on OxyContin for about 2 years after a major eye injury got tired of them and started suboxone about 5 years ago to get off them then I got schleroderma and have pretty severe pain so kept taking suboxone. Now my docs wanted me to use the butrans so my primary can just prescribed. My question if I have more pain while transitioning can I take a little suboxone ? I’m on 24mg/day of sub now
    And have the 20mcg patch which I’ve read is about equivalent to 12mg of sub, true or not?

    1. Damian Parkin

      The patch releases 20 micrograms an hour. 20 x 24 hours is 480 micrograms a day. That’s not even half a milligram!
      0.5mg is 500mcgm as I’m sure you know.
      These patches are for low dose treatment.
      Upwards of 2mg that’s 2000mcgm are used in opiate addiction treatment
      32mg a day is crazy. It has a ceiling effect, meaning it only has added side effects, this is what makes it safe. Reports say its about 4-8mg.
      Basically I think it would be a big drop. You may well suffer withdrawal, the good thing though is your tolerance will drop and the lower the dose you are at (tolerance wise) the less antagonism (bad) and more agonism (good) happens givig better pain relief. Google has tonnes of stuff on it

      1. Elaine Key

        I was on OxyContin 100 mg 2 x daily, Hydrocod 7.5/325 4x daily, and Tigsa muscle relaxer 325 MG 3x daily.
        I went to a new pain dr. He put me on Butran 10mg 1x weekly, stopped the OxyContin 100mg 2x daily, and gave me Hydrocod 7.5/325 mg from 4x daily to 2 x daily. My question is I?m in severe pain. How much more time do I need to give the patch?

  2. Ali Ervin

    I just started the butrans patch. It has been mostly effective so far. I’m only four days into it though. Right now it feels like I’m not on the right dose. There is still much pain in my hips and legs, but everything else is pretty well okay now. I was on 8 MG of suboxone 3 times a day and switched to the butrans. I’m not sure that you’re supposed to be on both. I think that is why you get taken off of the suboxone to be on the butrans. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help. I hope that this butrans works for both of us. So far it’s pretty great. Pain is no laughing matter :”(

  3. I’ve been taking buprenorphine, 0.3 mg IM 3-4 times a day, for >15 years. The patch appeals to me for a number of reasons — especially because it eliminates the ever-present risk of infection when injecting the stuff. (Curiously, medical professionals, without exception, seem to think that I have been lucky only to have had one soft-tissue infection (MRSA, no surprise) in all this time. “Happens to everybody sometimes,” as one nurse-anaesthetist put it when I was being treated for the thing. This made me feel better in one sense, with its implication that I didn’t particularly screw up, but on the other hand it scared me, since it seemed to suggest that it wasn’t something I could really prevent entirely and would probably happen again at some point.)

    What I haven’t been able to find out is what the equivalent patch dose would be to my present dose. Anybody out there have a clue? TIA….

    1. Samantha

      To answer your question regarding equivalent dosing can be difficult as the bioavailability of the drug can change based on the method of administration, for example you may get more of an effect from the same amount of medication IM vs transdermal, however, drugs like this are usually only prescribed in a way where the amount of drug you’re getting is the adjusted amount based on that drugs bioavailability (for example, if the manufacturer knows only 70% of the drug will be absorbed through the skin, the dosing usually reflects how much youre getting not how much of the drug is in the patch.)
      Since it is the same drug you do not need to adjust for cross tolerance, so we can do the math directly here but please confirm this with your doctor as I am not a health care provider.
      Patches come in 5, 10, and 20 mcg/hr which translates into 120, 240, and 480 mcg daily. If you’re taking .9-1.2mg daily, you will not approach that same dosage even on the highest level patch which provided .48mg a day. Your doctor may be willing to let you apply two 20mcg systems each week, but that is dependent on his or her discretion and your insurance coverage.
      Based on your dosage, I’d like to suggest another version of the drug that just came out this year. It is buccal (goes on the inside of your cheek) buprenorphine. The name of the med is Buprenex and it comes in slightly higher doses and may be administered every 12 or 24 hours. I hope you get the relief you’re looking for and don’t have to keep injecting yourself, IM sucks. Please do your due diligence and research this drug before speaking with your doctor, as I said it’s just been released so I can’t speak to the effectiveness or any issues that might be present with the drug.

  4. Julia Salgado

    I have Lyme disease and Chronic Pain. I haven’t found anything that really works on the pain enough to give me any real quality of life. I’ve been on many things but the last was 125mcgs of Fentanyl and oral Dilaudid for breakthrough. After it was determined that it really didn’t help, I did a 3 day detox/ withdrawal and was put on Suboxone. Side note: Fentanyl is evil, don’t take unless no options are left. I was put on Suboxone 16mgs as some ppl with Lyme have had pain relief but it made me feel strange, lots of nightmares and insomnia but not a lot of pain relief. I was dropped to 12mg and that felt better but the Dr doesn’t think it’s doing enough so wants to drop me and switch me to a BuTrans patch. I’ve been on 8mgs for 2 wks and the pain is unreal. I’d like to make the jump to BuTrans if only so I can add something for breakthrough until I wean off of it. Does anyone know at what level of Suboxone you can change to the BuTrans patch? I think my Dr said 4mgs but as that would be my next drop from 8mgs, could I just go on to the patch?? Thanks for any advice 🙂

    1. Samantha

      I would not make the jump from 8mg to the patch because Suboxone/Subutex are both high dose buprenorphine and the patch is low dose. Please follow your doctor’s suggestion and titrate your dose down properly as you are likely to experience discomfort and even withdrawal if you don’t step down gradually.

  5. JaniBeth

    Day 3 of 10mcg Butrans patch. I have been taking Norco 10/325 up to 6 a day, for over 5 years, due to degenerative disc and joint disease in my lower back, knee and shoulder issues, as well as Diverticulitis. I am tired of taking pills- refuse to move up to Oxy because I know how easy it can be to become addicted, and even more so- when/if something more serious happens (pain level speaking) It is so hard to explain to the doctors that you have a high pain threshold, due to chronic pain medication usage for years without looking like a “pill head”. It’s an all around bad deal when you live with pain. That being said- Day 3 and I think it is working OK….but not taking care of my pain like the pills. I am not giving up, but will see my doc next week on day 6….hopefully I will have a better opinion by then. I REALLY want these to work. To all those out there who are living with pain…I feel ya…literally. We need to all stick together! Blessings all to a healthier tomorrow!

    1. I just got butrans patches today 10 mcg and I too suffer with degenerative disk disease and have had fusion in lower back and neck, I was on hydrocodone 10/500 mg for years then they seemed to have stopped helping the pain now I’m taking oxycodone 10/325 and it works but there are days that I take 4/5 pills because the pain is so bad my most recent MRI shows a bulging disc under the already fused area, in my neck there are several bad disk as well which are compromising some nerves the pain can be unreal, sleepless nights,with no real comfort. I was on here googling about this butrans and came across these reviews,glad to know someone can relate to what I’m going through. I guess I will go ahead and try them just afraid of any negative side affects there’s already enough going on. Thanks for your post

      1. Echo Duva-Sprague

        Hello Sonja and all,
        I too have a bulging disk under a fused one in my c-4-5. I have been on hydrocodone 7.5 for years and it does little to help with the pain because I’m used to it. I was very reluctant to try anything more after doctor prescribed the Fentynal Patch because it scared the HELL out of me and my family (I was out of my mind!) it is very heavy duty, bad ass stuff!!!
        I finally agreed to try the Butrans 20mcg patch. Wow – I get relief without the blah side effects as well as a boost of energy here and there. For break through pain my doctor prescribed an anti-inflammatory called Duexis 800- 26.6mg 1 tab per 24 hours. This is an excellent anti-inflammatory that contains medicine that helps coat your stomach to counteract upset. I am able to tolerate my pain and have a life with this combo. Good luck to you and hope you find your path to pain relief.

  6. Tia Lawrence

    So, I’ve been taking 180mg of OxyContin and 60mg of oxycodone, 3 20mg. My doc can no longer give me the OxyContin per the new cdc guidelines. I would have to go see a pain management specialist. I do not want to do that, so I took a taper, went from 180 to 120 OxyContin, then 120 to 90, then 80, then 30 twice a day, I only took 1 30 as I began to see and feel the difference in my energy. Anyways I’m on a 20 mcg/hr butrans patch now, have had it on for 2 days. I also take 4 15mg oxycodone for breakthrough pain. It’s day 2 and I’m finding the patch is starting to work, I’ve only taken 2 oxycodone. I hope this works because I’m allergic to every NSAID made to man, gabapentine, and Lyrica, as well as all the othe meds created for nerve pain. It’s been a constant battle experimenting with different meds to see what works for me. I’m really thankful I got off the OxyContin, I feel a lot better. I just hope the butrans patch continues to provide more pain relief. I still feel pain but it’s only day 2. I think it’ll work. I’ve never tried Suboxone, or pill form buprenorphine. Hopefully others will benefit like I have from the patch. Wry one is different, so best of luck to you all with chronic pain. I feel for us all.

    1. I have been on 15 mg oxcodone three times a day starting to not last. Management wanted to put me on method employed I said hell no. I’m looking for a break though pain medication.i have hip pain one new hip and need another but I can’t not now.. I have back problems also heart issue nerve pain neroitin like to have killed me. Pain med cause blood pressure to drop. Total does though. I just need some advice on what I want end up in drug rehab. Likely headed there. But the pain is so bad. Any help or advice

  7. jonathan

    I am trying the butrans patch after 6 years of tramadol for severe neuropathic pain (400 mg/day). I am trying this because of the, for me, negative side effects of tramadol – insomnia, periods of mania, resultant great fatigue. I am only on day one of the butrans patch but find myself breathing very slowly, and still very fatigued. Since I am only beginning the butrans (if I make it through the weekend!), I will see how it goes and post again with a report. Anyone with similar experience please write a comment.

    1. I am on this, also, day two, and as yet, unimpressed. It seems that people either love it, or hate it. I am in the camp of hate it, as apparenntly, according to the info that comes with it, death can result, even if used properly, or for instance, (also per the accompanying info), if one takes a hot bath. (Whaaat?! Seriously, why is this on the market?). But I have serious to severe pain every day, 24/7, and these days, what choice does one have, but to do whatever pain mgmt. doctors tell you to do, if one hopes to receive any relief? There is no choice, on the patient’s part, basically. Very disheartening. But in any event, if it is affecting your breathing, you’re supposed to seek medical assistance, according to the info provided.

      Good luck to you, and all chronic pain sufferers! Chronic pain is a terrible thing, that is so detrimental to one’s life, and well – being.

      1. Hello,
        I am in my 2nd week of using the Butrans patch, 10 mg. along with taking 3 Lyrica 50mg. a day.
        I suffer from Gout, neuropathy where my toes are numb (not from diabetes) and cmc arithis, bone to bone in hands. I am a alcoholic… Clean and sober for 2 1/2 yrs now.
        Anyways I suffer from chronic pain and still get NO relief. My doctor will not give me anything better than Norcos which was for 20 days supply and Soma’s for a few months. Combined gave me some relief for 6 hrs or so….but it was relief. I will be starting Pain Mgmt classes next week, will also see my doctor then.
        I am wondering if there is some thing wrong with me…I am still in pain of some kind always. Guess that’s why I drank.
        Just wanted to throw it out there.
        Thanks Cherry P.

  8. Jennifer Ellis

    I have been on hydrocodone for several years. I just started the Butrans Patch and I have noticed severe nausea and stomach pain as in my stomach is always burning…does it do this to anyone else? If so how long does it last?

  9. Does anyone know if the butrans patch interfers with suboxone induction?

  10. Badqualityoflife

    I have a severe case of fybromyalgia. I know that most people with this disease can find meds that help them, but I seem to be a very difficult case. I’m currently on 20mcg of butrans patch, and I was taking 20 mg of oxycodone for breakthrough pain. I also have a severe case of insomnia. I sit and cry out of frustration because I cannot go to sleep, much less stay asleep. I have tried every medication under the sun for pain, and I have a very high tolerance for all medications. My rheumatologist has done metabolic tests on me, and I found out that I don’t tolerate many medications well, including morphine. So to my understanding, anything that is a morphine derivative or synthetic does not work either. I also have severe anxiety, mostly caused by my pain and lack of controlling it. Doctors think I am crazy or just an addict, and they are not always willing to help me. If anyone has any advice, please help me. I’m in my early 30’s and my life is falling apart.

    1. The docs do think you’re an addict, they feel this way about nearly everyone. With good reason too, as nearly everyone who suffers with intractable pain will at some point be clinically addicted to opiates. It’s designed this way. Pain is Big Bu$$iness. The medical industry doesn’t get rich by curing anything. Club Med needs you sick. The sad part is they demean you in the treatment process and make you feel like a junkie. In fact, many a junkie was born out of a greedy and destructive healthcare system. When the medical practitioners shake you down for all the $$$ they can squeeze you (and your insurance) out of… without actually endangering their own credibility… they then toss you out onto the mental health system for a rinse and repeat of this shakedown scenario. OR take the junkie route as many do because its the path of least resistance… for about a minute. It’s Sad. What’s left of your dignity, self respect and social well being after all this?

      That depends on what you demand to keep for yourself. Make your health and sanity top priorities. Going to BuTrans was smart. By now I’m sure you’re feeling relief. If you gave up too soon, go back and try again. It takes a week or two to iron out the proper dose. Don’t think it has to be a high dose because the other meds were high doses. BuTrans has a different chemical action that requires less active ingredient to be effective- because it’s acting on a different receptor than the traditional drugs did. It’s an amazing product and it works beautifully at normalizing your life. Just think of going weeks on end without realizing you have pain and are being actively treated for it! Not to mention being able to just $hi+ for once or simply fall asleep after Fallon!

      Btw, here are a few wonderful natural pain relievers: singing your favorite songs and talking to God Almighty, walking outdoors or on a treadmill, balance ball and bands for stretching, a long hot bath with your favorite salts and oils, drinking lots of clear spring water, sitting in the sunshine, raising a simple garden, reading a good book. Enjoying your children, partner or animals, if you have them. There are many ways to beat pain by distracting yourself.

      Strive to be well with the world first!!! Then strive to be pain free. Physical pain is far easier to deal with than mental anguish. The sooner you can get all this negativity out of your life, the better your chances for a full recovery.

      1. I totally agree with everything u said. “Pain is inevitable, but misery is an option”. I’ve been on Butrans 7.5mcg patch for 4 weeks. I suffer from EXTREME pain…..its a long list. Its not helping me the way ppl have said it helps. However, after talking to my doc today, she said she’s gonna up my dose. I don’t know to what, but whatever it goes up to, I pray it helps relieve some of this pain…all the things u stated for natural pain relief are the best things to relieve pain. Laughing works the best for me. I try to stay around positive ppl, who enjoy joking around and having fun. And like I said “PAIN IS INEVITABLE, BUT MISERY IS AN OPTION”. My thoughts and prayers go out to all who suffer with EXTREME pain. Although ur pain will still be there…laughing helps to relieve it….if only for a few mins. Cuz truthfully, that’s about how long the pain pills last.

      2. Careful! Hot water (long, hot bath), direct sunlight (sitting in the sunshine), and external heat sources are definitively contraindicated.

      3. I do love your natural pain relief suggestions Maria, but a big warning about the hot bath one because this is a forum about Butrans patches. If we are wearing one, we cannot take a hot bath or sauna or get overly hot or our patch can deliver all of its medication at once and we could overdose!

    2. I wouldn’t normally suggest this, but have you ever considered/tried methadone? I know it has a bad reputation, but I was in it for 12 years for opiate addiction and am currently in suboxone. I’m thinking since methadone is a man-made opiate, maybe you won’t have the same problem? TBH, I’d probably still be on it if my insurance hadn’t changed. I have really terrible anxiety and insomnia myself, and it’s not well controlled by suboxone, but it was on methadone, I had way less anxiety and slept really well! My only suggestion if you decide to try this(and haven’t already) is to keep your dose as low as possible. The other good thing about methadone is you can go to a clinic and they are EVERYWHERE! Most clinics treat both addicts and chronic pain people, however if you don’t want to explain your pain situation to then, just take any opiates before going in and tell them you’ve been using for at least one year. I know this sounds sketchy, I’m just trying to provide anything helpful I can think of. I hope this helps and I really feel for you! Good luck and I’ll save this page, so if you have any other questions, I’ll look back from time to time. I just turned 40, my sister has Chronic Lyme disease so I really do feel for you! All the best!

    3. RescueMom

      I know all of us have diff pain and diff experiences but maybe what i went through can help u. Ive been dealing w chronic pain since i was 16 and up until recently nobody believed in fibro. In addition ive beat my body up pretty bad as a gymnast. A few yrs ago i hit my worst as a MAJOR addict to pain meds, were talking way over daily limit for 5 adults every day. I cannot take any pain meds that make me euphoric. Im now 4 yrs clean from all other pain meds and stick to my 15mcg butrans patch with maybe an extra break through buprenorphine pill 1x daily. I did take the Suboxone version while detoxing but the Butrans patch and Subutex are approved for PAIN. I also have psychiatric disabilities that are extremely exasperated by all things associated w chronic pain and I refuse to take anything addictive for sleep. I would suggest talking to either a primary dr or even a psychiatric p.a. because they can help to get you restful sleep on safe medication. Remember, I was taking enough to kill a horse and my pain, my moods, my LIFE is better when I cut down on some meds and take less of the safe meds. U may suffer some emotional and physical withdrawl at first but it will get better! Im not a yoga, kumbaya, meditating kind of person but attacking our diseases as a whole works better than drugging ourselves to la la land. At 30 my life was not worth living, at 35 I found some peace. I hope u can too!

    4. Peter Radford

      Hi. I have Fibromyalgia and a crumbling spine so am now on butrans 5mg which helps a little. But Fibro is such a complicated area and in my parts (UK) they’ve even changed the name to complex regional pain syndrome – as if that makes any difference. Look its worth getting your Vit D and Vit B12 levels checked. My vit D was bouncing along the bottom level and a ton of supplementation has almost completely removed a bunch of symptoms including chronic costochondritis and awful neck pains. Worth a try. Keep on keeping on. Never give up and good luck.

      1. Deb Morgan

        I’ve not heard of that. Il have to ask my doctor. I’m on 30mcg butrans 3600mg gabapentin nefopam and 200g sertraline. I’ve just upped patch myself as my back is agony. Had fibro for 25years it’s 10ft worse after colitis started. Doctor ( not my usual one) told me today that the pain relief from the patch will wear off in 6 weeks?? Not heard of that either?? Any thoughts?

  11. Robbie Hined

    I suffer from severe arthritis challenges, hands, shoulders, knees, hips. I’ve taken many oral meds and wore fentanyl patches many years ago. When my Nucynta extended relief stopped working, my pain doctor put me on the Butrans patch. Yes I was nauseous the first couple days, but none after that. We started with the 10 mcg patch, but it didn”t completely eliminate my pain. Doctor increased to 15 mcg and it’s been extremely helpful–my pain is gone! So, if you and your doctor are looking into the patch, do it. If yoiu still have some pain with the dose you start with, let your doctor know so the dosage can be increased. I love being on this patch because I’m not ingesting medications. This patch has changed my life!

  12. I’ve been taking 2 8/2 mg of suboxone for the past three years just when I was supposed to go to the Doctor I found out he had to take an emergency leave mind you this left me in a serious predicament.. I tried to see if there were any other Doctors that were available to prescribe it and I wasn’t successful and the appointments were far into April.. what did I do called my regular doctor and he said he could prescribe the patches but not the suboxone. He gave me the 7.5 stating it is equal to what I have been taking. I know that isn’t the case I am on day 5, and I feel like shit my neuropathy pain is so intense I can’t sleep I am overdosing on Ibuprofen 800 because I can’t stand the pain.. this is exactly the reason why I started the suboxone in the first place I don’t see or feel any relief accept that it slightly helps the withdrawal feeling from suboxone! I don’t know what to do my feet are shot and my nerves on right there I can’t even stand anyone touching them let alone the pain is horrific.. First is the conversation the correct conversation because I will be back on the suboxone next month this is just to hold me over and it’s not doing that! Please help

  13. I am on oxicodone at 4 a day 30mg. My pain isn’t controlled yet. I have bulging disk in L2and 3. I have tried muscle relaxes and and having reactions to them. So I am thinking about. This patch. What am I going to feel and will it work.

  14. Chronic pain is the worst! I slipped a disc in my neck 9 years ago, which trapped the nerves in my right arm, causing permanent nerve damage. I had surgery to remove the disc, but sadly, the hospital dislocated my right shoulder and tore the right rotator cuff. Unaware of this and the cause of my shoulder pain for 5 years, I just kept getting fobbed off and put on more and more pain killers. Codeine, diazepam, amitryptiline, gabapentin and butrans patches. My life became a nightmare! I lost myself, totally absorbed by pain and medication. Compensating for my upper body pain, caused lower disc problems and more medication was NOT an option for me. HOPE. I went on a pain management programme at St Thomas’. I was hoping to be helped off these poisons, but instead, learned a great deal about how they work, what they do to you and how, after a while, they DON’T work! It has taken a year, but I am no longer on amitriptyline, gabapentin or butrans patches. It is hard, but these patches do not work long term without increasing the dose. I reduced the patch from 10 to 5mg last year, the withdrawal was so bad, I waited until the next school 6 week holiday to stop completely. I’m now 12 days without the patch. I have horrible withdrawal, no sleep for over a week. Headache, diarreah, nausea, temperature, sweating and shivering. However, I know that this will pass and I will get back to the person I once was. Pain is horrible, but Please, don’t increase these meds, get help and get off them. I realise now that there is nothing for us who have chronic pain. No groups, no support, just blank expressions from the health professionals we rely on. I am posting this to try and help anyone considering butrans as a pain relief. Please, please don’t touch it! It’s lovely to be pain free when you first take it, but the pain quickly returns as your body becomes immune to the drug. Increasing is the only option, then the pain comes back again. How far can we go with this? My advice, ask your GP to go into a pain management programme, I met some amazing people there, all suffering like me and all on the same meds. We have all reduced or stopped our medication since June last year and none of us feel worse for it. We still have constant pain, but no worse than when we were on these meds. Good luck to you all and I hope that if you are considering butrans, you will reconsider after hearing my story.

  15. Are there special considerationsfor use in the elderly? My mother is 93 with Alzheimer’s dementia. She has has several falls without fractures (confirmed by x-ray) but now has significant pain in her back. She lives in Assisted Living. Due to State and Federal regulations, in Assisted Living Facilities, pain management except for Tylenol and NSAIDS is discouraged. I believe in palliative management.

    1. Jamie Mathis

      It does have special use for elderly patients in the warning and usage papers it comes with. Idk the details.

  16. Jamie Mathis

    I was on tramadol forever. Since it was ultram with the butterfly on the box. I have fibromyalgia, arthritis in hips and tailbone especially bit other joints as well, chronic pain, migraines, a whole you name it of conditions. Used Butrans for over a year. It was almost life restoring. Still used tramadol for breakthrough, but half as much as before. Now insurance suddenly won’t pay for Butrans at all. Dr won’t work with me and wants me to find my own pain management Dr. He gave me 30 Tylenol 3 and said make it last. My insurance prefers I use FENTANYL, oxy, whatever opiate is convenient and cheap for them. Losing Butrans I’ve lost 3 weeks of my life. Using it gained me many months of lessened pain so I could at least keep my house cleanish. Now I’m bedridden, a single mom with a scared kid. Lovely stuff really. Butrans worked so well for me on multiple levels. Now I’m on the road to fentanyl, oxy, MORPHINE etc. Worst nightmare come true. Appreciate the Butrans if u can get it.

  17. Back pain fused at c4 thru c7; also suffer from lifelong major depression which make sure pain worse. I have found butrans patch to be a miracle drug. When I?m on it I have total quality of life?s but it?s $400/mo now that insurance companies won?t pay for it so I have learned to alternate weekly between the patch and hydrocordone. I?ve read that with butrans you don?t develop a tolerance requiring ever increasing doses and as I?ve gotten relief at the same dosage for three years it seems to be true.

  18. Hi
    How is your depression now? I have been taking oxy 10s and know how they will work and how long they last so I know how to ge3t the best quality of life. I just got a new pain dr., and he has prescribed Butrans 10. I am afraid to use this patch because it’s an ‘unknown’ and there are so many bad things people report. I have degeneration of L4-5, waiting for a rt knee replacement and left sciatic. Do you think these patches will help as much as the oxy 10s?? I don’t have any one to talk to, tried the pharmacist at 2 diff pharmacies and they just recite what is on the website. I just need information from a real human who won’t read the brochure or act out the website.
    What do you think??

    1. Hi Pamela
      I?ve been on butrans for about 6 months. I?m in need of new knees but under 45 so…
      I?ve found the patches great. Took a few weeks to get dosage right but I?m lucky to have a very supportive GP and we spoke on the phone weekly until it was settled (UK so NHS). For me the biggest bonus is the lack of peaks and troughs. No more waking up and waiting for the pills to kick in. I?m also a lot more energetic, although the first week on each dose wasn?t great – doc gave me anti-nausea pills which were v helpful even though I was on co-codamol and tramadol before the patches. I also didn?t drIve for a few days, just in case.
      Side effects are much better, and I still have the Cody for top ups. My only issue is that I?ve got sensitive skin so with recent hot weather I?ve had a reaction – I?m speaking to doc in a couple of days about it. Antihistamines help, but want to check in about what to do.

      If you give it a go, don?t forget it takes three days to hit max dose (iirc) and it will take a bit of trial and error to get right.. I ran it by a friend who is a nurse (critical care, she knows her stuff) and she said it?s great medication, way less nasty than fentonyl.
      Hope that helps

  19. I used the Butrans 15 patch for 3.5 years for fibromyalgia, degenerative disks, spinal stenosis and severe arthritis in neck, shoulders, wrists, hands, ankle and toes. Miracle drug. Took care of all my issues with only an 800mg bump from Ibuprofen from time to time when needed. Never needed an icrease in the dose. No side effects. Due to the so called opiodoid crises, insurance quit paying for it and Dr. will not prescribe it any more. Put me on cymbalta instead. Pain specialist szid I need to change my expectations and learn to live with some pain. Really! Why, when there is something available that gives quality of life? I am now miserable and suffering. Only dosnside to butrans was I couldnt usd our hot tub while on it.

  20. Charles Marksch

    I have been on the Butrans patch for over a year. The Veterans Administration requires a random urine testing to make sure you are using the patches and not selling them. My problem is that my urinalysis keeps coming back negative. My doctor knows that I am using the patches and cannot figure out why the tests show that there is no evidence of it in my system. Does anyone have any idea what is going on?

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