Benzodiazepines are prescription drugs used to treat conditions like Anxiety, Insomnia, and seizures. Examples of these drugs include: Alprazolam, Clonazepam, Diazepam, and Lorazepam. The FDA has applied a Black Box Warning (an alert for consumers) that the use of opioids and benzodiazepines together has serious risks that include unusual dizziness/lightheadedness, extreme sleepiness, slowed or difficulty breathing, coma and death. Alcohol increases these risks. It is Astra Behavioral Health, LLC policy to NOT prescribe benzodiazepines to patients who also use opioids. If a patient is already prescribed both, the prescriber has a responsibility to taper the benzodiazepines as part of the treatment plan. These patients must be monitored at appropriate intervals and visits may be more frequent.
Buprenorphine (Suboxone or Sublocade) are medications used in combination with naloxone to treat opioid addiction. Opioids are a class of drugs that include the illegal drug heroin, synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, and pain relievers available legally by prescription, such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, methadone, and many others. Buprenorphine is an opioid analgesic medication, while naloxone is an opioid antagonist drug, and the two are combined in a 4 to 1 (buprenorphine to naloxone) ratio. The naloxone is present in the tablet to prevent diversion to injected abuse of this medication. Injection of buprenorphine/naloxone by a person who is addicted to opioids will produce severe opioid withdrawal.