FENTANYL TRANSDERMAL

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Duragesic

GENERIC NAME(S): FENTANYL

  • Severe Pain (ie – caused  by cancer)
  • Falls under the drug class of narcotic analgesics

How to use fentanyl transdermal

  • Always refer to your doctors instructions before taking this medication. Duration and dosage will be determined by your medical condition and its response to the medication. Make sure to take this mediciation in the prescribed amount and time period even after symptoms disappear. Discontinuing the medication before completion of treatment may cause incomplete treatment of condition. If Symptoms persist, consult your doctor
  • Medication is applied to a dry, non-hairy area on a flat part of the skin as directed by the doctor. It should not be applied on burns, cuts, irritated skin, or skin that has been exposed to radiation (x-ray treatment). For young children or in people unable to think clearly (such as due to dementia), apply the patch on the upper back to lessen the chance of removal. For ahiry areas, use scissors to tirm as much hair as possible. Do not shave hair as this may irritate the area. If needed, use water to clean the area. Skin must be dry and devoid of any oils, lotion or alcohol before application. If a patch does not stick well, the edges of the patch may be attached to the skin via medical tape
  • The patch is usually replaced every 72 hours to a different area each time to prevent irritation. Used patches may still cause cause serious harm or even death, so fold it in half with the sticky sides together and discard properly.
  • Minor side effects (if these symptoms persist or worsen, inform your doctor)
    • Nausea, vomiting, constipation, lightheadedness, dizziness, drowsiness, or headache, Mild irritation, itching, or redness at the application site
  • Serious side effects (inform your doctor immediately)
    • mental/mood changes (such as agitation, confusion, hallucinations), severe stomach/abdominal pain, difficulty urinating, slow/fast/pounding heartbeat, fainting, seizure, slow/shallow breathing, unusual drowsiness/difficulty waking up.
  • Severe allergic reactions are rare. Get immediate medical help if you notice the following:
    • Rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing

Precautions

  • Inform your doctor
    • Allergy to the medication, to adhesives or any allergies
    • Medical History of brain disorders (such as head injury, tumor, seizures), breathing problems (such as asthma, sleep apnea, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease-COPD), kidney disease, liver disease, mental/mood disorders (such as confusion, depression), personal or family history of regular use/abuse of drugs/alcohol, stomach/intestinal problems (such as blockage, constipation, diarrhea due to infection, paralytic ileus), difficulty urinating (such as due to enlarged prostate), disease of the pancreas (pancreatitis), gallbladder disease, slow/fast/irregular heartbeat.
  • May cause dizziness or drowsiness. Limit alcohol intake
  • Inform your doctor promptly if you develop a fever as increase in body temparature may cause overdose. Doing strenuous work/exercise especially in hot weather must be avoided
  • Some patches may contain metals that can cause serious burns during an MRI. Ask your doctor whether you will need to remove your patch before the test.
  • Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially confusion, dizziness, drowsiness, and slow/shallow breathing.
  • Should only be used when there is a clear need during pregnancy as it may harm an unborn baby. If you are planning to be pregnant or think you may be pregnant, discuss the risks and benefits of use with your doctor.
  • Consult your doctor before breast-feeding as this medication passes into breast milk and may cause unwanted effects on your baby

 

Interactions

Taking multiple drugs may affect how medications work and/or cause unwanted side effects. List down all the medications you are taking and inform your physician and pharmacist. Do not take, discontinue, or alter any dose of medications without prior approval of your physician.

  • Products that may interact with this medication include:
    • Certain pain medications (mixed narcotic agonist-antagonists such as pentazocine, nalbuphine, butorphanol), narcotic antagonists (such as naltrexone), cimetidine, nefazodone, St. John’s wort, azole antifungals including itraconazole/ketoconazole, calcium channel blockers such as diltiazem/verapamil, HIV drugs such as nelfinavir/ritonavir, macrolide antibiotics including clarithromycin/erythromycin, rifamycins including rifampin, certain anti-seizure medicines including carbamazepine, alcohol, allergy or cough-and-cold products, anti-seizure drugs (such as phenobarbital), medicine for sleep or anxiety (such as alprazolam, diazepam, zolpidem), muscle relaxants, other narcotic pain relievers (such as codeine), and psychiatric medicines (such as risperidone, amitriptyline, trazodone).
    • Taking MAO inhibitors with this medication may cause a serious (possibly fatal) drug interaction. Examples are isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine) during treatment with this medication. Most MAO inhibitors should also not be taken for two weeks before treatment with this medication. Ask your doctor when to start or stop taking this medication.
  • Labratory tests that may be affected:
    • amylase/lipase levels

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately.

  • Symptoms of overdose may include: 
    • slow/shallow breathing, slow heartbeat, loss of consciousness.

Missed Dose: If you leave a patch on for more than 3 days (72 hours), remove the patch and apply a new patch as soon as you remember. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage:

  • Room temperature
  • Do not freeze
  • Do not expose to light and moisture
  • Do not store in the bathroom
  • Keep all medications away from pets and children

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