"Nov. 2, 2012 -- Safety steps taken in the wake of the fungal meningitis outbreak have worsened drug shortages, raising questions about whether the U.S. must choose between the safety and the availability of crucial medicines.
IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
MEPERIDINE TABLET - ORAL
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Demerol
USES: This medication is used to treat moderate to severe pain. Meperidine acts on certain centers in the brain to give you pain relief. This medication is a narcotic pain reliever similar to morphine.
HOW TO USE: Take this medication by mouth, usually every 3 to 4 hours as needed or as directed by your doctor. You may take this drug with or without food. If you have nausea, you may take this drug with food, although this may cause your body to absorb less of the drug and get less benefit from it. Consult your doctor or pharmacist about other ways to decrease nausea (e.g., antihistamines, lying down for 1-2 hours with as little head movement as possible).
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Pain medications work best if they are used as the first signs of pain occur. If you wait until the pain has worsened, the medication may not work as well.
You may also take long-acting narcotic medications or use narcotic patches for ongoing pain if so directed by your doctor. In that case, this medication might be used for sudden (breakthrough) pain only as needed. Also follow your doctor's or pharmacist's instructions for safely using non-narcotic pain relievers (e.g., naproxen, ibuprofen). Ask your doctor if you have any questions.
This medication may cause withdrawal reactions, especially if it has been used regularly for a long time or in high doses. In such cases, withdrawal symptoms (such as restlessness, runny nose, watering eyes, trouble sleeping, severe abdominal/muscle pain, nausea, vomiting, rapid breathing, and fast heartbeat) may occur if you suddenly stop using this medication. To prevent withdrawal reactions, your doctor may reduce your dose gradually. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details, and report any withdrawal reactions immediately.
Though very unlikely, this medication can also be habit-forming and may result in abnormal drug-seeking behavior (addiction). To lessen the risk of becoming addicted, do not increase your dose, take it more frequently, or use it for a longer time than prescribed. Properly stop the medication when so directed.
When used for an extended period, this medication may not work as well and may require different dosing. Talk with your doctor if this medication stops working well.
Inform your doctor if your pain persists or worsens.
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