Tramadol is a pain medication in the opioid category and is used to treat pain which ranges from moderate to severe levels. This pain reliever has a narcotic effect and can cause side effects which are very serious in nature. It can increase the risk of serotonin syndrome, decreased alertness, seizures and drug addiction. These are in addition to the side effects such as nausea, itchiness, and constipation. The reason why it is prescribed is due to its effectiveness for pain. It is equal to morphine for moderate pain, though for the severe pain it is less effective than morphine. This comes in different forms – liquids, drops, syrups, elixirs, powders and effervescent tablets and capsules. It also is available in suppositories, injections and compounding powders.
Dangers of Tramadol
Tramadol is habit forming and thus should not be taken unless it is prescribed by the doctor. It should also never be crushed, broken or the extended release pill should not be opened and then consumed, else it could result in a fatal dose. When this medication is misused, it could result in not only addiction but also overdose and death. This is especially true for children or people who are not prescribed this drug. Therefore, it should never be shared with anyone.
The reasons why a prescription is required
- This needs to be consumed with care as it cannot be taken when one has consumed alcohol, sedatives, narcotics or tranquilizers in the recent past.
- It is known to cause slowness of breath or even stopping of breathing when it is first started
- There are chances of this causing seizure upon taking
- It cannot be taken by people who are on antidepressants, muscle relaxers or even those on medication for nausea or vomiting.
- If taken when pregnant, it can cause withdrawal symptoms in the newborn which could be life threatening.
- It cannot be used by nursing mothers as it passes into the breast milk and could harm the baby.
Precautions before taking this medication
To buy Tramadol, the doctor is needed to prescribe this medication as there are certain precautions which need to be considered. This medication is never given to a patient who:
- Is allergic to it
- Has breathing problems or asthma
- Is using tranquilizers or sedatives
- Have a history of epilepsy, seizures or head injuries
- Has drug or alcohol addiction
- Have metabolic disorders
- Is under medication for migraines, spasms, mental illness or depression
There are various drugs that interact with Tramadol and these could be seemingly harmless over the counter drugs or even herbal ones or vitamin pills. That is why this medication can only be administered by a medical practitioner and to one who is informed about all the medications you are taking, the disorders or diseases you are suffering from as well as your past history.
This is the reason why this drug is placed under the Federal Controlled Substances Act under Schedule IV