Hydromorphone: Therapeutic use

Last modified: Sunday, 31. May 2009 - 4:18 pm

Hydromorphone is primarily used to treat patients who are experiencing moderate-to-severe back pain, cancer pain, and headache. In addition, hydromorphone is used before and during a variety of surgical dental procedures. Hydromorphone is also available as a cough syrup for the control of dry, non-productive cough or persistent, exhausting cough.
Chronic pain, especially back pain, is one of the most common maladies treated with hydromorphone and other narcotic analgesics. This type of pain can often be alleviated to the point where the person can function to some degree. Hydromorphone is also effectively used to treat cancer pain. Much of the pain associated with cancer involves what is called neuropathic pain. This is pain caused by interference or disruption of nerve cells and nerve transmission in the body.
Hydromorphone is also used to treat chronic pain syndromes. These pain syndromes can develop from a variety of injuries and can affect muscles, joints, and other parts of the body. In such cases, patients often take the drug on an “as needed” basis. Hydromorphone is frequently prescribed to treat pain associated with moderate-to-severe osteoarthritis. Narcotic analgesics are generally prescribed for these patients when other painkilling drugs are not effective.
Patients who have neuropathic pain also use hydromorphone. This includes AIDS and diabetes patients who often develop peripheral neuropathy as their conditions progress. This complication produces a tingling or burning sensation in the hands or feet. If untreated, the pain can progress to the point where normal activities, such as walking, can be severely impaired.
Hydromorphone is also indicated for use during surgical procedures, and pain associated with trauma to bone and tissue, biliary colic, myocardial infarction, severe burns, and renal colic.

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