Pharmacy/patch

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Question
My pain mgmt dr just suggested that I consider Butrans patches today. She didn't give me an Rx, because I have to check with my insurance. However, it sounds like it might be a good choice. It is a schedule III, which I like, because right now I am on Percocet 10/325 QID. I don't like the addictive properties of Percocet, yet I need pain control which I can continue to function with. I work as a nurse, so Butrans sounds like it is chemically related to Nubain, Talwin or Stadol that I once gave to patients. Is it an opioid agonist/antagonist? Or, can you give me some more info? Since I'm a nurse you can use medical jargon; I will understand it. Thanks in advance.

Answer
Hi Patricia,
Butrans contains buprenorphine, one of the safest opiod derivates. It is an opiod derivate made from thebaine one of the opium alkaloids. It is a good and pwerful pain killer, about 50 time more potent than morphine. It has very little addictive potential. However like other opiods it can cause urinary retention (more common in males) and vomiting (usually without nausea) I have used the drug myself after fracture dislocation of right humerus.
Pharmacologically it is a partial agonist of Mu receptors, hence has little potential to cause trouble. We in India do not have access to to this drug in the form of a patch, we only get fentanyl patches and they are not very effective. I would welcome if this patch were to be available in India. I would heartily recommend you to use the patch when necessary.
Best wishes
Ravi Ghooi

Pharmacy

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Dr. Ravindra Bhaskar Ghooi

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I can provide information on drugs and medicines, their actions, uses, interactions and adverse effects. To avoid confusion, generic names of medicines may please be provided. I am a pharmacologist, having worked on animal and human pharmacology, and presently I am the Dean of Bilcare Research Academy, where we teach courses on clinical research. We dont work on saturdays and sundays, hence questions reachng me on these days will be replied on Monday, please bear with me.

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