Anyone suffered skin reaction with change from Butrans to Butec Patches?

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I'd been prescribed Butrans pain patches to help transfer from one Biological therapy to another (Enbrel to Cimzia) by my Rheumatologist. I cannot tolerate co-codamol or tramdol - I vomit. My kidneys say no to NSAIDS of any sort these days too leaving me somewhat short of pain relief.

I found the Butrans patches one of the best methods of delivering pain relief. Not having to remember to pill pop every 6 hours was a blessed relief. My GP changed the prescription from Butrans to Butec a generic, and I assume a lot cheaper. I checked it on line and found it was meant to be identical to Butrans.

Unfortunately about 2 weeks after starting Butec I started getting a skin reaction under the patch. Week 1 was mildish, Week 2 lifted the skin off after removal of the patch and week 3 lasted 36 hours before I hastily removed it.

Nothing had changed prescription wise apart from the change from Butrans to Butec. 

Anyone else suffered this reaction?

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  • Posted

    Hi Im new to this site and realise the original post is 3 yrs old.

    I got refered to the pain management team because of long term chronic pain(13 years)

    i was managing ok on cocodamol and tramadol but PMT decided to take me off almost everything including my antidepressants.

    to cut a long story short my pain level and shot through the roof.

    I was initially given butrans for the first month and had no skin reaction, i did have the initial nausea, vertigo, headache etc because of the change of meds. once that settled I was great.

    Then just as Okapis said i was given butec and told it was the same. But I also got the same reaction. The itching , burning and blistering raw red under the patch until i could take it no longer . I was told to continue and that it should settle. So I did as i was told, partly because the patches worked on my pain and had no other side effects other than the itching and blistering. 4 months on and I have ended up with scarring on every patch site Ive used. I kept a diary of what time and date the patches were changed and the site of the patches so that I did not use the same site for 6 weeks. (The dark scarring left was also a good indicator)

    I do not want to take pills again as tramadol made me hyperactive and I also think my concentration/ mental alertness etc.

    Has anyone been given Fentanyl patches. ?

    Ive been reading quite a few studies and one suggested it as a viable alterntive.

    My practice nurse said its only for cancer or terminal patients but studies say it has been used as an alternative to butec?

    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.


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  • Posted

    Im actually going through a change from co-codamol and tramadol over to buprenorphine patches. At first the cheaper NHS generic patch starting at 20mcg and a couple of weeks later adding a 5mcg. The first four weeks was great, effective pain relief after being on pain pills for over two years, (covid),. Unfortunately as soon as the extra small patch was introduced, (coincidence?), I started having trouble keeping both patches on for 7 days due to fluid leakage. They became very hot during the week and keeping them on has been a real challenge using stickytape etc. I've had to use replacement patches when they do come off completely and getting them replaced has been difficult, a few times leaving me to go cold turkey over a long weekend as the control aspect of these patches is a bit too extreme. I'm now trying Butrans on the advice of the local pharmacy. The problem continues and is actually worse because the quality of the butrans patch enables it to withstand the fluid leak and therefore stay on longer but continues to fill up with fluid almost acting like a layer of skin. this creates a blister like effect which lifts the medicinal part of the patch away from the skin before bursting out of the sides all at once. At the end of the 6/7 days I find my skin to be burnt off in a square at the centre of the patch about an inch and half in size and very sore, this is identical with the 5mcg and I get two chemical burns. I think this is about week ten. Very low mood over this as I don't believe I can continue with these patches and it will probably mean back to pills..

    Thanks for allowing me to post this.

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