What Is Demerol?

Though most pain can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers such as Tylenol, some pain is too severe to respond to nonprescription pain relievers. Some prescription pain relievers are prescribed for home care or care after hospitalization or surgery. Other prescription pain relievers are usually only used in the hospital. One prescription pain reliever is Demerol. What is Demerol?

Demerol is a prescription pain reliever for moderate to severe pain. The generic name for Demerol is meperidine. This drug is in a class of painkillers known as narcotics. Demerol and morphine are two potent painkillers often used in a hospital setting.

This drug reduces pain by inhibiting the pain receptors of the brain. Demerol is a drug that can be addictive. Patients should not take more than the prescribed amount of the drug. Patients should not give their medication to someone else. Demerol is sometimes abused and can lead to drug addiction.

Demerol used in the home is in tablet or liquid form. The liquid form of Demerol is banana flavored. A teaspoon of liquid Demerol contains fifty milligrams of Demerol. The tablet form of Demerol is available in fifty or one hundred milligram tablets. Injections of Demerol as may be given in the hospital are more effective than the tablet and liquid forms of Demerol.

A patient on Demerol needs to take the medication exactly as prescribed. The dose of Demerol is taken with water. A typical adult dose of Demerol is one hundred fifty milligrams every four hours. The dosage may be adjusted several times in response to the needs of the patient and effectiveness of the drug to manage the pain.

Common Demerol side effects include nausea, dizziness, vomiting, sweating, and sleepiness. Other possible side effects of Demerol include headaches, dry mouth, constipation, skin rashes, and tremors. Patients taking Demerol should contact their physicians about any disturbing side effects.

An overdose of Demerol can be fatal. Some of the signs of an overdose of Demerol are cold and clammy skin, slow or shallow breathing, and extreme sleepiness. If a person suspects that an overdose has occurred, emergency medical services should be contacted immediately.

Patients taking Demerol are warned not to drive or operate heavy machinery while on this medication. Demerol should not be taken if the patient has taken an MAO Inhibitor within the previous two weeks since these medications can cause a drug interaction. Patients need to contact their doctors if they continue to experience pain.

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