What is this medicine?
METHADONE (METH a done) is a pain reliever. It is used to treat severe pain. The medicine is also used to prevent withdrawal symptoms in people addicted to other drugs.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- adrenal gland problem (Addison's disease)
- brain tumor
- drug abuse or addiction
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- gallbladder disease
- head injury
- frequently drink alcohol-containing drinks
- kidney disease or problems going to the bathroom
- liver disease
- low blood pressure
- lung disease, asthma, COPD, or sleep apnea
- mental problems
- seizure disorder
- thyroid disease
- an unusual or allergic reaction to methadone, other opioid analgesics, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medicine?
Take the medicine by mouth. Determine the number of tablets you need for your dose. Dissolve the tablets in a glass of water, orange juice, citrus Tang, or citrus flavors of Kool-Aid. Stir well for one minute. You will see some of the tablet in the glass. The tablet will not completely melt. Drink all of the liquid in the glass. Do not chew or swallow whole tablets. The tablets must be dissolved. If the medicine upsets your stomach, take the medicine with food or milk. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Do not take more medicine than you are told to take.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medicine?
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
- antibiotics like chloroquine, clarithromycin, erythromycin, grepafloxacin, pentamidine, sparfloxacin, troleandomycin
- arsenic trioxide
- medicines for irregular heart beat like amiodarone, bretylium, disopyramide, dofetilide, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol
This medicine may also interact with the following medications:
- antibiotics like gatifloxacin, gemifloxacin, levofloxacin, mefloquine, moxifloxacin, ofloxacin, telithromycin
- antihistamines for allergy, cough and cold
- MAOIs like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate
- medicines for blood pressure
- medicines for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disturbances
- medicines for irregular heart beat like flecainide, propafenone
- medicines for nausea or vomiting like dolasetron, ondansetron, palonosetron
- medicines for seizures like carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin
- medicines for sleep
- medicines for sleep during surgery
- medicines to numb the skin
- muscle relaxants
- narcotic medicines (opiates) for pain
- peginterferon Alfa-2b
- phenothiazines like chlorpromazine, mesoridazine, prochlorperazine, thioridazine
- rifampin, rifapentine
- some medcines for cancer like dasatinib, lapatinib, sunitinib
- some medicines for HIV like delavirdine, didanosine, efavirenz, nevirapine
- St. John's wort