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Demerol : Drug Information

What is Demerol?

Demerol is the brand name of a drug known as Pethidine or meperidine. It is a synthetic opioid medication that belongs to the class of medicines called phenylpiperidine. Doctors prescribe it to treat pain ranging from moderate to severe and any other medical conditions determined by them. It is available in the market in oral as well as injection form. One can avail of this medication only with a proper prescription from the doctor.

What to know before taking Demerol?

You should avoid taking this medication if you are allergic to it or any of its components or if you have:

  • Severe asthma or other breathing problem
  • Blockage in stomach or intestine
  • taken an MAO inhibitor such as methylene blue injections in the past two weeks

To ensure that Demerol is safe for you, you should tell your doctor if you have or ever had the following medical issues:

  • Head injury
  • Brain tumor
  • Seizures
  • Addiction to drugs or alcohol
  • Mental illness
  • Blockage in stomach or intestine
  • Urination problem
  • Liver infections
  • Kidney disease
  • Problem with adrenal gland
  • Problem in gallbladder
  • Disfunctioning of the thyroid gland
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Abnormal curvature of the spinal cord which affects breathing

Expecting women and lactating mothers should avoid using Demerol to be harmful to newborns and nursing babies.

How to take Demerol?

Take this medication exactly as may be prescribed by the doctor. You must follow all the instructions given on the prescription label and medicine carefully. You should try to consistent throughout your treatment. Don’t use Demerol more often than recommended. You should consult your doctor if you feel anything unusual while taking this medication. Misuse, abuse, or addiction to this medication can be fatal.

Hydrocodone is a highly addictive medication; therefore, buying or selling hydrocodone is an offense under the prevailing law. Please don’t stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor; otherwise, you may experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Keep Demerol medicine out of children’s reach and store it at room temperature away from heat and moisture. Check the expiry date of Demerol before buying it.

After completion of treatment, you should dispose of all the leftover medicines properly. You can dispose of medication with the help of a pharmacist nearby you, or you can dispose of it by flushing it down in the toilet.

Demerol dosage

The dosage of Demerol prescribed by the doctor is dependent on several factors, such as :

  • The age and weight of the patient
  • Symptoms
  • The seriousness of the condition
  • Other medical issues that the patient is having
  • Other medications that the patient is using
  • How the patient reacted to the first dose of the medication

The doctor may prescribe the dosage of Demerol according to the different medical conditions of the patient. The following are the average dose of Demerol that a doctor can prescribe:

Dosage for adults

In oral form

50 mg to 150 mg after every 3 to 4 hours. Your doctor may adjust your Demerol dose as per your conditions and symptoms. The maximum amount can reach upto 600 mg per day.

Through injection

50 mg to 150 mg after every 3 to 4 hours. The doctors prefer intramuscular injections if they require to give the patient a repeated dose of Demerol.

Dosage for children

In oral form

1.1 mg to 1.8 mg/ kg of the child’s weight after every 3 to 4 hours. Your doctor may adjust your Demerol dose as per your conditions and symptoms. The maximum amount for a day can reach up to 600 mg. And the maximum single quantity can reach upto 50 mg to 150 mg.

Through injection

1.1 mg to 1.8 mg/ kg of the child’s weight after every 3 to 4 hours. The doctors prefer intramuscular injections if they require to give the patient a repeated dose of Demerol. The maximum single quantity can reach upto 50 mg to 150 mg.

Overdose

If you feel uneasiness or symptoms of Demerol overdose while you are on this medication, you should consult your doctor and ask for medical help as soon as possible. You can also call the poison helpline number at 1-800-222-1222 and ask for medical assistance. The following are some symptoms of Demerol overdose:

  • Slow breathing
  • Slow heart rate
  • Severe drowsiness
  • Weakness or tiredness
  • Cold and clammy skin
  • Blueiesness on the skin or lips
  • Fainting
  • coma

What to avoid while using Demerol?

You should avoid taking alcohol after taking Demerol, as the interaction between these two can be dangerous. Taking this medication can impair your thinking process or reaction to that. You must be very careful while driving and doing activities that require alertness and attention.

Demerol side effects

Some of the common side effects of using Demerol are as follows:

  • Dizziness or drowsiness
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sweating

It is obvious to experience mild side effect symptoms, but if these symptoms bother you so much and are unbearable, you should consult your doctor and ask for medical help.

Stop the medication right there and tell your doctor if you are experiencing the following health issue:

  • Allergic reaction to your body
  • Slow heartbeats
  • Shallow breathing
  • Sleep apnea
  • Drowsiness or dizziness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Confusion
  • Mood swings
  • Constipation
  • Tremors
  • Involuntary movements of muscles
  • Seizures
  • low cortisol levels- loss of appetite, vomiting, nausea, weakness or tiredness, etc
  • symptoms of serotonin syndrome- agitation, fever, hallucination, sweating, loss of coordination, etc

What drugs can interact with Demerol?

If your doctor is treating you with Demerol, he must be knowing all the possible interactions with other medications. It is your responsibility to tell the doctor about all the over the counter medicines you take or taken in the past few days. Some of the following medications which can interact with Demerol are:

  • The antibiotic
  • Antifungal medication
  • Heart or blood pressure medication
  • Seizure medication
  • Medicine to treat HIV or hepatitis C.
  • Narcotic medications
  • Sedative medicines such as diazepam, alprazolam, lorazepam, Xanax, Klonopin, Versed, etc.
  • Sleeping pills
  • Muscle relaxer
  • Medicines to treat mood swings
  • Anti-anxiety pills
  • Anti-depressants medication
  • Medicines to treat mental illness
  • Stimulants
  • Medication for Parkinson’s disease
  • Migraine medication
  • Medicines to treat nausea and vomiting
  • MAO inhibitor
  • Nutritional supplements
  • Herbal products

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