Drug information provided by: Merative, Micromedex®
It is very important that your doctor check your progress while you are using this medicine, especially within the first 24 to 72 hours of treatment. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to use it. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
Do not use this medicine with a monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor (eg, isocarboxazid [Marplan®], linezolid [Zyvox®], phenelzine [Nardil®], selegiline [Eldepryl®], tranylcypromine [Parnate®]). Do not start taking meperidine during the 2 weeks after you stop an MAO inhibitor. Wait for 2 weeks after stopping meperidine before you start taking an MAO inhibitor. If you take them together or do not wait 2 weeks, you may have confusion, agitation, restlessness, stomach or bowel symptoms, a sudden high body temperature, an extremely high blood pressure, or severe convulsions.
If you think you have, or someone else has, taken an overdose of this medicine, get emergency help at once. Your doctor may also give naloxone to treat an overdose.Signs of an overdose include: change or loss of consciousness, cold, clammy skin, coughing that sometimes produces a pink frothy sputum, decreased awareness or responsiveness, extreme dizziness or weakness, increased sweating, irregular, fast, slow, or shallow breathing, pale or blue lips, fingernails, or skin, sleepiness or unusual drowsiness, slow heartbeat, seizures, swelling in legs and ankles, or trouble breathing. Call your doctor right away if you notice these symptoms.
Check with your doctor before using this medicine with alcohol or other medicines that affect the central nervous system (CNS). The use of alcohol or other medicines that affect the CNS with meperidine may worsen the side effects of this medicine, such as dizziness, poor concentration, drowsiness, unusual dreams, and trouble with sleeping. Some examples of medicines that affect the CNS are antihistamines or medicine for allergies or colds, sedatives, tranquilizers or sleeping medicines, medicine for depression, medicine for anxiety, prescription pain medicine or narcotics, medicine for attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, medicine for seizures or barbiturates, muscle relaxants, or anesthetics, including some dental anesthetics.
This medicine may cause sleep-related breathing problems (eg, sleep apnea, sleep-related hypoxemia). Your doctor may decrease your dose if you have sleep apnea (stop breathing for short periods during sleep) while using this medicine.
This medicine may be habit-forming. If you feel that the medicine is not working as well, do not use more than your prescribed dose. Call your doctor for instructions.
Using narcotics for a long time can cause severe constipation. To prevent this, your doctor may direct you to take laxatives, drink lots of fluids, or increase the amount of fiber in your diet. Be sure to follow these directions carefully, because continuing constipation can lead to more serious problems.
This medicine may cause adrenal gland problems. Check with your doctor right away if you have darkening of the skin, diarrhea, dizziness, fainting, loss of appetite, mental depression, nausea, skin rash, unusual tiredness or weakness, or vomiting.
Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may occur, especially when you get up suddenly from a lying or sitting position. Getting up slowly may help. Also, lying down for a while may relieve the dizziness or lightheadedness. If this problem continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.
Call your doctor right away if you have worsening of pain, increased sensitivity to pain, or new pain after taking this medicine. These may be symptoms of opioid-induced hyperalgesia and allodynia.
Check with your doctor right away if you have anxiety, restlessness, a fast heartbeat, fever, sweating, muscle spasms, twitching, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or see or hear things that are not there. These may be symptoms of a serious condition called serotonin syndrome. Your risk may be higher if you also take certain other medicines that affect serotonin levels in your body.
This medicine may make you dizzy, drowsy, confused, or disoriented. Do not drive or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
Before having any kind of surgery (including dental surgery) or emergency treatment, tell the medical doctor or dentist in charge that you are using this medicine. Serious unwanted effects can occur if certain medicines are given together with meperidine.
Do not stop using this medicine without checking first with your doctor. Your doctor may want you to gradually reduce the amount you are using before stopping it completely. This is to decrease the chance of having certain side effects when you stop the medicine, including agitation, anxiety, dizziness, a feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings, headaches, increased sweating, nausea, trembling or shaking, trouble sleeping or walking, or unusual tiredness.
Using this medicine while you are pregnant may cause serious unwanted effects, including neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome in your newborn baby. Tell your doctor right away if you think you are pregnant or if you plan to become pregnant while using this medicine.
For nursing mothers:
Talk to your doctor if you have any questions about taking meperidine or about how this medicine may affect your baby.
Call your doctor if you become extremely tired and have difficulty caring for your baby.
Your baby should generally nurse every 2 to 3 hours and should not sleep for more than 4 hours at a time.
Check with your doctor or hospital emergency room immediately if your baby shows signs of increased sleepiness (more than usual), difficulty breastfeeding, difficulty breathing, or limpness. These may be symptoms of an overdose and need immediate medical attention.
Using too much of this medicine may cause infertility (unable to have children). Talk with your doctor before using this medicine if you plan to have children.
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal (eg, St. John's wort) or vitamin supplements.