Meperidine: Ingestion methods

Last modified: Sunday, 31. May 2009 - 5:17 pm

Meperidine can be taken orally or injected. Oral forms include tablets and syrup. Dosages of tablets range from 25 mg to 100 mg meperidine per tablet. The syrup form contains 50 mg meperidine per 5 ml. The typical dosage is from 50 mg to 150 mg every three to four hours.
Injections of meperidine can be given intramuscularly (in the muscle), subcutaneously (under the skin), and intravenously (directly into the bloodstream). The body responds more readily to meperidine when it is injected, so dosages are usually about half that of the oral form, again every three to four hours. As with other opioids, intravenous administration of meperidine is often given at a low, continual dose.
Patients recovering from surgery can request that meperidine be administered through a system known as patient controlled anesthesia (PCA). This system allows a patient to administer his or her own medication in small doses. The machine has an electronic control mechanism that allows only a specific amount of meperidine to be administered by the patient each hour. PCA alleviates the need for a nurse to give the patient an intramuscular injection every three to four hours, and keeps meperidine in the body at a more constant level.

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