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Acute overdosage with tramadol can be manifested by respiratory depression, somnolence progressing to stupor or coma, skeletal muscle flaccidity, cold and clammy skin, constricted pupils, bradycardia, hypotension, and death.
Deaths due to overdose have been reported with abuse and misuse of tramadol, by ingesting, inhaling, or injecting the crushed tablets. Review of case reports has indicated that the risk of fatal overdose is further increased when tramadol is abused concurrently with alcohol or other CNS depressants, including other opioids.
In the treatment of tramadol overdosage, primary attention should be given to the reestablishment of a patent airway and institution of assisted or controlled ventilation.
Supportive measures (including oxygen and vasopressors) should be employed in the management of circulatory shock and pulmonary edema accompanying overdose as indicated. Cardiac arrest or arrhythmias may require cardiac massage or defibrillation.
While naloxone will reverse some, but not all, symptoms caused by overdosage with tramadol, the risk of seizures is also increased with naloxone administration. In animals convulsions following the administration of toxic doses of ULTRAM ER could be suppressed with barbiturates or benzodiazepines but were increased with naloxone. Naloxone administration did not change the lethality of an overdose in mice. Hemodialysis is not expected to be helpful in an overdose because it removes less than 7% of the administered dose in a 4-hour dialysis period.
ULTRAM ER should not be administered to patients who have previously demonstrated hypersensitivity to tramadol, any other component of this product or opioids. ULTRAM ER is contraindicated in any situation where opioids are contraindicated, including acute intoxication with any of the following: alcohol, hypnotics, narcotics, centrally acting analgesics, opioids or psychotropic drugs. ULTRAM ER may worsen central nervous system and respiratory depression in these patients.This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 11/30/2015
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