Characteristics, treatment patterns and retention with extended-release subcutaneous buprenorphine for opioid use disorder in Ontario, Canada

A population-based cohort study

In 2019, opioids accounted for 12.9 million years of healthy life lost from early death and disability, globally. Methadone and buprenorphine are commonly prescribed and effective opioid agonist treatments (OAT) that have been shown to reduce the risk of opioid-related and all-cause death among people with opioid use disorder. Despite the demonstrated effectiveness of OAT, uptake and treatment retention remains low. Novel extended-release formulations may improve OAT accessibility by reducing the frequency of healthcare visits.

This study examined the uptake, characteristics, treatment patterns, and retention of individuals initiating extended-release subcutaneous buprenorphine (BUP-ER; brand name: Sublocade®), a monthly injectable OAT.

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