Suboxone and Zubsolv are both brand name medications that contain buprenorphine and naloxone that are used to treat addiction. Buprenorphine and naloxone-based medications are used to treat patients with opioid use disorder (OUD) and maintain long-term opioid recovery. You may be questioning whether Zubsolv is stronger than Suboxone, or whether Zubsolv or Suboxone is more effective. Below is a brief comparison guide of the two brands (Zubsolv vs Suboxone).

Zubsolv Vs Suboxone: How Do They Measure Up?

What is Suboxone?

Suboxone is a brand name version of buprenorphine naloxone. It is a partial opioid agonist, meaning it partially activates the body's mu-opioid receptors. This can help prevent cravings and restore the ability to function for individuals with opioid use disorder.

Suboxone has been on the market for about 19 years and is one of the most commonly dispensed prescriptions in the medication-assisted treatment (MAT) of addictions.

Suboxone (strip) and Subutex (pill) were both released on the market in 2002. Both Suboxone and Subutex contain buprenorphine as an active ingredient. You may recognize naloxone as the overdose reversal medication. The addition of naloxone to buprenorphine-based medications such as Suboxone and Zubsolv reduces the ability to misuse these substances. The primary difference between Suboxone and Subutex is that Subutex does not contain naloxone, which makes it harder to overdose on and more prone to diversion. Hence, some people find Subutex to be a better option.

Suboxone is prescribed as a strip that is placed under the tongue to dissolve or inside the cheek.  

Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist, meaning that it activates the opioid receptors in the brain; however, not to the same extent as full opioid agonists, such as oxycodone, methadone, morphine, or heroin. The “partial” opioid agonist is also what creates a plateau effect of these medications.

What is Zubsolv?

Zubsolv is manufactured by Orexo and is the newest competitor to Suboxone, arriving on the market in 2013, over a decade after the release of Suboxone. Suboxone and Zubsolv contain the same active ingredients (buprenorphine and naloxone). Zubsolv comes in tablet form that also dissolves under the tongue.

Some argue that the Suboxone film is safer than the Zubsolv tablet, however, this has not been verified or validated. The side effects profiles of Suboxone and Zubsolv are also similar.

What is the difference between Zubsolv and Suboxone?

Zubsolv and Suboxone are quite similar. Both consist of the same fundamental chemical structure, a combination of buprenorphine (the main dependency remedying element), and naloxone (the opioid blocker). Both medications are administered sublingually, meaning under the tongue but Suboxone is in strip form (which can also be placed inside the cheek) and Zubsolv is in tablet form.

The marketed differences between the formulations of Zubsolv and Suboxone include taste, dosage, tolerability, size, and delivery method. Suboxone is available in 4 doses, while Zubsolv is available in 6. 

The potency and the rate at which the active ingredients (buprenorphine and naloxone) dissolve in the body is also a difference between Suboxone and Zubsolv. Zubsolv is more bioavailable, meaning it dissolves quicker and can be given in smaller doses.

Suboxone emits a citrus flavor while Zubsolv is menthol infused. Suboxone resembles a breath strip while Zubsolv is dispensed in a tablet variety. Neither Suboxone nor Zubsolv can get you high once consumed as directed by a licensed physician. When ingested, the only element of both Zubsolv and Suboxone that activates is the buprenorphine. The naloxone is inactive, it is only called upon in instances where the buprenorphine is mishandled and abused i.e., inhaled or injected as opposed to sublingually ingested.

If the Suboxone and/or Zubsolv is consumed in the designated manner, the naloxone simply dissolves in the bloodstream and exits the body by way of the urethra. If the Suboxone and/or Zubsolv is administered intravenously, the naloxone is activated to block the opioid receptors. This can cause immediate withdrawal. Naloxone is much more competitive than buprenorphine. Naloxone will beat the buprenorphine to the opioid receptor if released at the same time. If used as directed, the presence of naloxone makes no difference to the effectiveness of the drug, the naloxone simply dissolves.

Whether you prefer orange or mint, strips, or pills, Zubsolv or Suboxone, MAT, or abstinence, Confidant clinical staff will prescribe the treatment that’s right for you.