Does Suboxone Affect Fertility?

Suboxone is a combination of two different opioid receptor antagonists called buprenorphine and naloxone. It’s mainly used for the treatment of opioid addiction or dependency and is intended for sublingual dosage and administration. The medication is reportedly available in two dosage levels: 2 mg of buprenorphine with 0.5 mg of naloxone and 8 mg of buprenorphine with 2 mg of naloxone.

Suboxone Side Effects

The drug has been highly effective for opioid dependence, and although Suboxone is used for the prevention of withdrawal syndrome, it may cause narcotic withdrawal reactions on rare occasions. This will likely happen at the beginning of your treatment with the drug. Let us see some common side effects of Suboxone. They include:

  • Mouth numbness
  • Mouth pain
  • mouth redness
  • Headache
  • Numbness
  • Drowsiness
  • Insomnia
  • Vomiting
  • stomach pain
  • Constipation
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Fertility problems in males and females

More Severe Side Effects of Suboxone

  • Fainting
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Dizziness
  • Mood changes (including agitation, confusion, and hallucinations)
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty waking up

Can Suboxone Affect Fertility?

So does suboxone affect fertility? Suboxone may cause fertility problems in both men and women. It can influence the way the hormones that support sperm production and testosterone perform. If you are pregnant or you plan to get pregnant or you are breastfeeding, you should speak with your doctor before using Suboxone for treatment for opioid dependence. One study has found sexual dysfunction among several male patients who have received buprenorphine and naltrexone (the two main components of suboxone) to manage (maintenance therapy) for opioid dependence.

The study found that men who suffer from opioid dependence and are taking Suboxone to suffer sexual dysfunction both in the short term and long term. Another study found that medications for long-term treatment of opioid dependence affected male and female sexual function. However, this is an area that still needs more studies because it has been poorly investigated to date.

 

To research sexual dysfunction in men with opioid dependence receiving Suboxone (combination of buprenorphine and naltrexone) maintenance therapy, a semi-structured questionnaire was issued to 60 sexually active men. The questionnaire, which was titled BMFSI (Brief Male Sexual Functioning Inventory), was administered to over 60 sexually active men. These men were receiving buprenorphine and naltrexone treatment for opioid dependency. The BMFSI was designed to determine the prevalence of erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, reduced libido or low sexual desire, and general weakness caused by loss of semen in men taking Suboxone.

More than 83% of the sexually active men who took the questionnaire on buprenorphine and another 90% on naltrexone both reported the prevalence of one of the symptoms stated above. The most common sexual dysfunctions reported according to the study include premature ejaculation (which included 83% taking buprenorphine and 87% taking naltrexone). The next in line is erectile dysfunction (which included 43% taking buprenorphine and 67% taking naltrexone). Low libido or sexual desire is next (which included 33% taking buprenorphine and another 47% taking naltrexone).

Final Words

Opioid dependency and its treatment mainly with Suboxone has been associated with sexual dysfunctions in men. However, additional research should be done to provide more insight in the future.