Tramadol

  • Generic Name or Active Ingridient: Tramadol
Drug Class: Tramadol > Other Opioid Agonist > Opioid Agonist > Analgesic.

Uses

Tramadol is a narcotic-like pain reliever used to treat moderate to severe pain. It is sometimes prescribed to treat post-surgical pain. Doctors prescribe Tramadol extended-use to control chronic pain when coverage is needed around the clock. Learn More About Tramadol Uses

Administration/Dosage

Tramadol is available in pill or disintegrating tablet form to be taken by mouth only. Take tramadol with or without food, but take it the same way each time. Swallow the tramadol tablets whole; allow the disintegrating form to dissolve in your mouth without chewing. Do not crush tablets. Never inhale or inject Tramadol. Doing so may result in life-threatening side effects, overdose or death.

Tramadol may not be suitable for children under the age of 16. Talk with your pediatrician to find out if tramadol is right for your child.

Tramadol is normally prescribed to be taken as needed for pain; do not worry if you miss a dose. Simply take another dose when you have pain, provided enough time has passed since your last dose. If you are taking Tramadol on a regular schedule and miss a dose, take another dose as soon as you remember. If it is nearly time to take a regularly scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and resume your normal schedule. If you miss several consecutive doses, or if you have trouble maintaining the prescribed schedule, talk with your doctor.

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Action

Tramadol is a centrally-acting synthetic analgesic. This means it works in certain areas of the brain and nervous system to decrease pain.

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Precautions

Tell your doctor if you are allergic to tramadol or any other medication. Allergic reaction is a very serious medical condition that may result in death. Go to the emergency room immediately at the first onset of an allergic reaction. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include hives, difficulty breathing and swelling of your face, lips, tongue or throat.

You may not be able to take tramadol if you have a history of certain medical conditions. Do not take this drug if you have ever been addicted to drugs or alcohol or if you have ever attempted suicide. Tell your doctor about any serious or chronic illnesses including kidney disease, cirrhosis or other liver disease. Talk with your doctor if you are on dialysis, have a stomach disorder. You may not be able to take tramadol if you have a history of depression, mental illness or thoughts of suicide.

Tramadol can make you drowsy. Do not operate heavy machinery or drive a car until you know how tramadol affects you. Avoid engaging in risky behavior that requires you to be alert and awake. Alcohol and some medications can enhance this effect.

Do not take Tramadol while drunk or after having taken street drugs, narcotics for pain relief, sedatives, tranquilizers or medicines to treat depression, anxiety or mental illness.

This drug can be habit-forming, especially if you take it for long periods of time.

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Warnings

Tramadol use has been associated with seizures, especially in individuals with a history of seizures, head injury, metabolic disorders or on medications such as antidepressants, muscle relaxers, narcotic, or medicine for nausea and vomiting.

It is not known how taking tramadol can affect your unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while taking tramadol. If you become pregnant while taking tramadol, call your doctor immediately. Tramadol is found in breast milk. Do not take tramadol when breastfeeding.

Stopping tramadol use suddenly may cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Whenever possible, wean yourself from tramadol by taking smaller doses further apart. If you cannot comfortably stop using tramadol, consult with your doctor or qualified in-patient or out-patient rehabilitation center. More Warnings About Using Tramadol

Drug Interactions

Taking tramadol with other prescriptions, over-the-counter medications and herbal remedies may cause unfavorable or serious drug interactions. Tell your doctor if you are taking antifungal medications, digoxin, erythromycin, MAO inhibitors, and medications for anxiety, mental illness, nausea, and pain. You may not be able to take tramadol if you are taking medications for seizures, muscle relaxants, sedatives, sleeping pills, SSRIs, tranquilizers, tricyclic antidepressants and warfarin.

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Side effects

You may experience side effects while taking tramadol. Some side effects can be serious or life-threatening. Seek emergency medical assistance if you experience agitation, hallucinations, fever and fast heart rate after taking tramadol. Other serious side effects include overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination and fainting. Go to the emergency room or call for an ambulance if you have a seizure, a red, blistering, peeling skin rash, shallow breathing or a weak pulse. There are less serious side effects associated with tramadol. Consult with your doctor if these side effects become acutely uncomfortable or don't go away on their own. Less serious tramadol side effects may include dizziness or a spinning sensation, constipation, upset stomach, headache, drowsiness or feeling nervous or anxious. Learn More About Tramadol Side Effects

Overdose

If you suspect that you or someone you know has taken an overdose of tramadol, seek emergency assistance immediately. Contact your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 or go to the emergency room. Overdose symptoms include extreme drowsiness, shallow breathing, muscle weakness, slow heartbeat, cold or clammy skin, fainting or seizure.

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Abuse

Tramadol is a Schedule II drug, which means it carries a significant risk for abuse and physical as well as psychological dependence. Pharmaceutical companies legally manufacture tramadol for licit use as a pain reliever but abusers obtain tramadol through forged prescriptions, bogus prescription call-ins to pharmacies, "doctor shopping" as well as theft from pharmacies and friends. Read More About Tramadol Abuse

Withdrawal

You may experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking tramadol, especially if you have been using high doses or taking the opioid for a long period of time. Symptoms vary in intensity. Withdrawal is a normal, predictable, physical sign of dependency, not necessarily a sign of willful abuse. Withdrawal symptoms may prevent you from quitting tramadol without medical assistance. Read More About Tramadol Withdrawal

Detox

Dependency and addiction to tramadol is often difficult to overcome on your own, especially if you have been taking large doses or using these opioids for a long time. Fortunately, there are in-patient and out-patient treatment facilities where trained professionals can minimize withdrawal symptoms, detoxify your body and give you the tools you need to live drug-free. Detoxification, rehabilitation and counseling are effective therapies to treat addiction to tramadol and other opiates.

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Storage

Keep tramadol away from excessive heat and moisture. Do not keep this drug in your bathroom or car. Store tramadol away from children, pets and adults who might accidently or purposefully consume the drug. Do not share tramadol with others, especially with individuals with a history of alcohol or drug abuse. Keep track of your medication, taking note of any missing doses.

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