Buprenex (buprenorphine hydrochloride) is a prescription drug that’s used to treat severe pain. The cost of the drug may depend on factors such as your dosage and whether you have health insurance.

Buprenex is used in adults and certain children to treat severe pain when other pain relievers aren’t working well enough or cause too many side effects.

The active ingredient in Buprenex is buprenorphine. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.)

Buprenex comes as a liquid solution given by a healthcare professional as either:

For more details on Buprenex, see this in-depth article.

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The price you pay for Buprenex can vary. It may depend on your treatment plan and your insurance coverage (if you have it). It will also depend on how much you have to pay for a visit with your doctor or another healthcare professional to receive Buprenex.

To find out how much you’ll pay for Buprenex, talk with your doctor or insurance provider.

Note: If you have insurance, you may need to get prior authorization before your insurance provider will cover Buprenex. This means your insurer and your doctor will discuss Buprenex in regard to your treatment. Then the insurance company will determine whether the drug is covered. If Buprenex requires prior authorization and you don’t receive it before you start treatment, you could pay the full cost of the drug.

Be sure to ask your insurance company whether Buprenex requires prior authorization.

Buprenex is available as the generic drug buprenorphine hydrochloride. A generic contains an exact copy of the active drug in a brand-name medication. A generic is considered just as safe and effective as the original drug but generally costs less.

To find out how the costs of Buprenex and buprenorphine hydrochloride compare, talk with your doctor or insurance provider.

If you’ve been prescribed Buprenex and you’re interested in using buprenorphine hydrochloride instead, talk with your doctor. They may prefer that you use one version instead of the other. You’ll also need to check with your insurance provider, as it may only cover one drug or the other.

Why is there such a cost difference between brand-name drugs and generics?

Years of research and testing are needed to ensure that brand-name drugs are safe and effective. This testing can make the drugs expensive. The manufacturer of a brand-name drug can sell the drug for up to 20 years. After that, other drugmakers can create generic versions. This competition in the market can lead to lower costs for generics. And because generics have the same active ingredients as brand-name drugs, they don’t need to be studied again. This can also lead to lower generic costs.

If you need help covering the cost of Buprenex, check out NeedyMeds. On this site, you can find details on drug assistance programs and links to savings cards and other services.

If you have questions about how to pay for your prescription, talk with your doctor.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about Buprenex and cost.

How does the cost of Buprenex compare to that of Butrans?

Buprenex and Butrans are pain relievers that contain the active ingredient buprenorphine, but they come in different forms.

Buprenex comes as a liquid solution given by a healthcare professional as either:

How much you pay for Buprenex depends on several factors, including how much you pay for medical visits to receive the injections.

Butrans comes as a skin patch that you get from a pharmacy, and the cost can vary based on the pharmacy you use.

To learn more about the cost difference between Buprenex and Butrans, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

How does the cost of Buprenex compare if I receive it by intramuscular injection versus an IV infusion?

The price you pay for Buprenex depends on several factors. These include your dosage, how it will be administered, and how much it costs to visit your doctor for your treatment.

Talk with your doctor to learn how much you’ll pay to receive Buprenex by IV infusion and by intramuscular injection. They can help you determine whether one way of receiving treatment is more cost effective and appropriate for you.

If you still have questions about the cost of Buprenex, talk with your doctor. They may be able to give you a better idea of what you’ll pay for this drug. But if you have health insurance, you’ll need to talk with your insurance provider to learn the actual cost you’d pay for Buprenex.

Examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor or insurance provider include:

  • What are my options if I can’t afford Buprenex treatment?
  • If I need a higher dose of Buprenex, how will this affect my cost of the drug?
  • If I started treatment with Buprenex, can you prescribe the generic version for me?

To learn more about Buprenex, see these articles:

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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.