Duramorph is the brand name of morphine given by injection. This drug is extremely powerful and incredibly potent.
If a person begins to abuse Duramorph, it is very likely that they will experience severe side effects, including addiction and overdose.
According to the National Library of Medicine, "Morphine injection is used to relieve moderate to severe pain" and can also be used during or after surgery to treat pain. This drug is usually only given when a person is experiencing intense pain that cannot be treated with another type of medication. Morphine is a natural substance found in the poppy plant, and it is very similar to opium (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration).
Duramorph can be necessary in certain situations, but unfortunately, many people steal the drug from hospitals or obtain it in other illegal ways in order to abuse it. Morphine has extremely intense effects, especially when injected, and patients should only take the medication exactly as prescribed by their doctor to avoid serious physical and psychological risks.
Signs and Symptoms of Duramorph Use
It is very easy to recognize when a person is on Duramorph. The medication often causes drowsiness and will put a person to sleep very quickly. However, an individual on this drug will usually need to be monitored to ensure that their breathing does not decrease to a dangerous degree. Other effects of morphine, as stated by the NLM, include:
- Stomach Pain and Cramps
- Dry Mouth
- Mood Changes
- Small Pupils
- Difficulty Urinating
- Nausea and Vomiting
Most of the time, this medication is only prescribed in hospitals, although some individuals may be given Duramorph in another type of environment. The risks associated with the drug, however, make it less likely to be prescribed to most individuals if unnecessary, as it is a very powerful drug.
Risks of Duramorph Use
The main risks associated with Duramorph include those common to opioid users: tolerance and dependence. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, "It is possible to be dependent on morphine, without being addicted to morphine." But these effects, which are natural, can lead to withdrawal symptoms and, in some cases, abuse, as many people will often try to circumvent their tolerance or withdrawal effects by taking higher doses of the drug.
Patients should also be wary if they experience hives, skin rashes, or swelling. These could be signs that they are allergic to Duramorph. The IV being used to give the drug should also never produce pain, burning, or swelling, as this could be another serious issue.
Individuals who abuse Duramorph are putting themselves at high risk. Because the drug is injected, sometimes people do not realize how much they are actually taking, putting them in serious danger of overdose. Abusing morphine in this way is also likely to lead to heroin abuse, as heroin is taken similarly and can cause serious issues separate from those caused by prescription drug abuse.
Duramorph is usually protected as much as possible from abuse, but some individuals do still get ahold of it for the purposes of getting high. Abusing this drug is extremely dangerous and can lead to all the issues caused by other types of opioid abuse and perhaps even more quickly because of its intense effects.
Duramorph Addiction and Treatment
Addiction to Duramorph can usually be treated similarly to heroin addiction: with the help of medications and behavioral therapies (NIDA). Methadone may be necessary for those who are severely dependent on the drug, and rehab should include a well-rounded program with several treatment options working together to create a strong recovery. If an individual was suffering from chronic pain that led to their Duramorph abuse - or another type of co-occurring disorder, this issue will need to be addressed and treated as well.
Duramorph is often a necessary medication for those experiencing severe pain or for individuals who need surgery. However, the widespread abuse of this drug and its long history of misuse make it potentially dangerous. It is important never to take more of this medication than prescribed and to talk to your doctor about Duramorph so you can understand all of its possible side effects.