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Long-acting opiate pain relievers are medicines used to relieve moderate to severe long-term pain. They are also called extended-release opiates. Opiates relieve pain by changing the way your body feels pain. They don't cure a health problem, but they help you manage the pain.
If you take a lot of short-acting medicine, your doctor may give you long-acting opiates. Long-acting opiates help you avoid the ups and downs in pain relief that you may have with short-acting medicine.
Opiates are powerful medicines. When taken on schedule and as your doctor prescribes, they work well and are safe. But misuse can cause overdose, dependency, addiction, or death.
To avoid taking too much (overdose) of these medicines:
To use long-acting opiates safely:
All medicines have side effects. But many people don't feel the side effects, or they are able to deal with them. You may:
Usually the benefits of the medicine are more important than any minor side effects.
Current as of:
April 10, 2014
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Nancy Greenwald, MD - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.
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