Meperidine Addiction

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Meperidine is a generic drug, most commonly known as the brand-name Demerol. Meperidine is used for the treatment of moderate-to-severe pain, and it’s sometimes used to put people to sleep before a procedure or for pain relief following childbirth. Meperidine is an opioid analgesic, meaning it’s an opioid pain medication that binds to certain opioid receptor sites throughout the body of the patient. Opioids are also referred to as narcotics. Meperidine is a synthetic opioid, which was first synthesized in the late 1930s. As with other opioids, meperidine changes how the brain and the nervous system send pain signals and respond to pain. Meperidine is available as a tablet and a syrup, and it’s taken as needed. Some of the side effects of meperidine can include nausea, vomiting, constipation, dry mouth, sweating and changes in vision. Severe side effects may occur as well, including slow or labored breathing. Meperidine is similar to morphine.

Meperidine Addiction

Demerol is the active ingredient in the brand-name drug Demerol, and Demerol is frequently given in tablet form. A Demerol tablet is usually small, white and scored. Depending on the dosage and the manufacturer, it may have different markings and logo imprints. It’s usually given as either a 50 mg or 100 mg dosage. There are meperidine injection solutions available in dosages of 25 mg, 50 mg, 75 mg and 100 mg per mL of solution. A meperidine syrup is available as well, which can be taken orally.

When someone is prescribed meperidine or given the drug in a clinical or hospital setting, they should be warned about the risk of addiction. There is a black box warning with meperidine, stating that it may be habit-forming, especially with longer-term use. The risk of meperidine becoming habit-forming can be especially high in people with a personal or family history of excessive drug or alcohol use, including other prescription drugs. Along with the potential for a psychological addiction to occur with meperidine, it can be physically habit-forming as well. If someone takes meperidine for more than a few weeks, they may experience withdrawal symptoms if they try to stop using it suddenly.

Meperidine is a synthetic opioid. Opioids are a class of drugs that include prescription narcotic pain medicines and the illicit drug heroin. Opioids contain chemicals that relieve pain and create relaxation, so they are often used in medicine, but they are highly addictive. When someone takes a prescription medicine like meperidine as prescribed and only for a short time, the risk of addiction is somewhat low, but misusing any opioid can increase the likelihood of an addiction forming as well as other dangerous side effects. Opioids activate receptors located through the brain, spinal cord and all of the body. These receptor sites are involved not only in pain sensations but also feelings of pleasure. When opioids bind to receptor sites, they block pain signals being sent from the body to the brain, but they can also create a pleasurable or euphoric response. An artificially high amount of dopamine is released into the brain and body. That can create a reward and reinforcement response, which can then cause addiction.

To learn more about addiction, and how it can be treated, contact The Recovery Village today.

Meperidine Addiction
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