fentanyl (generic name)

It is used to treat pain before, during, and after surgery
(FEN ta nil)
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What is this medicine?

FENTANYL (FEN ta nil) is a pain reliever. It is used to treat pain before, during, and after surgery. This medicine is also used before, with, and in place of other medicines for sleep during a medical procedure.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • brain tumor
  • breathing problems
  • drug abuse or addiction
  • head injury
  • kidney disease
  • liver disease
  • use of a MAOI like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate in the past 14 days
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to fentanyl, other opioid analgesics, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This medicine is for injection. It is given by a health-care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

This does not apply.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • alcohol
  • antihistamines
  • barbiturates like phenobarbital
  • general anesthetics
  • MAOIs like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate
  • medicines for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disturbances
  • medicines for sleep
  • muscle relaxants
  • narcotic medicines (opiates) for pain

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Your condition will be monitored carefully while you are receiving this medicine. There are different types of narcotic medicines (opiates) for pain. If you take more than one type at the same time, you may have more side effects. Give your health care provider a list of all medicines you use. Your doctor will decide how much medicine to take.

Tell your doctor or health care professional if you continue to have pain, your pain does not go away, if it gets worse, or if you have new or different type of pain.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • breathing problems
  • changes in vision
  • confusion
  • feeling faint, lightheaded
  • hallucination
  • irregular heartbeat
  • problems with balance, talking, walking
  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
  • unusually weak or tired

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • constipation
  • dizzy
  • headache
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea, vomiting
  • sweating

Where should I keep my medicine?

This drug is given in a hospital or clinic and will not be stored at home.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Last Updated: August 22, 2012
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