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What is Hydromorphone

Hydromorphone is also known as dihydromorphinone, and sold under the brand name Dilaudid among others, is an opioid used to treat moderate to severe pain. Long-term use is only recommended for pain due to cancer. It may be used by mouth or also taken by the injection into the vein, muscle, or under the skin.

It works centers in the brain to give you pain relief.

It is available in both tablet form and as well as in liquid form.

Important Information

Hydromorphone belongs to the group of medicines known as neurotic analgesics. It works on the central nervous system to relieve pain. habit

Whenever neurotic medicine is used for a long time, it may form or cause mental or physical dependence. 

Physical dependence may lead to withdrawal side effects if treatment is stopped suddenly. Mental dependence is not likely to occur when narcotics relieve pain.

This medicine is available only under a restricted distribution program called the opioid Analgesic program.

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Tablets
  • Liquid (solution forms)

What to know before taking Hydromorphone 

Hydromorphone oral tablets are generally used for short-term treatment. This drug comes with serious risks if you’re not taken by the suggestion of your doctor or by prescription. 

This drug can cause a severe allergic reaction. Symptoms can include:

  • Hives,
  • Rash,
  • Swelling of your throat or tongue
  • Problem in breathing 

Do not take this medicine if you are suffering from an allergy to this medicine before ever.

How to take Hydromorphone

The hydromorphone dosage prescribed by your doctor will depend on many factors:

  • The severity condition you are using Hydromorphone to treat
  • The form of hydromorphone you take
  • Your age
  • And more other medical conditions you may have 

Doctors can start with a low dosage and adjust it and make it comfortable to reach the required doses which are suitable for you. Doctors ultimately prescribed the smallest dosage that provides the desired effect.

Before taking the test to your doctor. The doctor will determine the best dosage to suit your needs.

Hydromorphone Dosage

People with kidney disease may start with a dose that is 25 percent to 50 percent lower than a typical starting dose. Before using that quantity consult your doctor.

People with liver disease may start you at a dose that is 25 percent to 50 percent lower than the typical doses. If you have a severe liver problem, then your doctor may use another drug for pain relief instead of the extended-release tablet, or they can give you a lower dosage of another form of this drug.

This is not allowed to be given to children who are younger than 18 years.

Adult dosage for severe pain (18 to 64 years age)

  • Oral tablets: typical starting dosage is 2-4 mg once every 4-6 hours
  • Extended-release oral tablet: for use only in opioid-tolerant people.

Senior dosage for severe pain (65 years and older )

The kidneys of older adults may not work as well as they used to. This can cause your body to process drugs more slowly. The result is that most of the drug stays in your body for a longer time. This raises your risk of side effects.

Your doctor can start with a small amount of dosage or with a different schedule. That can help to keep the level of the drug from building up too much in your body in large amounts.


If someone has a serious sign like a breathing problem, immediately give him naloxone if available. 

 If overdose some of the symptoms like:

  •  Severe drowsiness
  • Inability to wake up
  • Slow breathing or shallow breathing,
  • Slow heartbeat 
  • cold/clammy skin 
  • Bluish skin/lips/nails,
  • Seizure,coma

These all happen when someone takes more than guidance or the prescribed amount of this medicine. This can be on purpose.

What to avoid while using Hydromorphone 

Do not use this medicine if you have used an MAO Inhibitor in the previous 14 days:

  • A head injury, brain, tumor, or seizures
  • Breathing problems, sleep apnea,
  • Liver or kidney diseases
  • A sulfite allergy 
  • Alcoholism, drug addiction, or mental illness
  • Problems with your gallbladder, pancreas, or thyroid.

Hydromorphone side effects

If you have a sign of allergy-like difficulty in breathing, swelling in your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Opioid medicine can slow or stop your breathing and also cause death.

Call your doctor if you feel:

  • A slow heart rate, or weak pulse rate 
  • Severe weakness or drowsiness,
  • Noisy breathing, sighing, shallow breathing, breathing that stops during sleep,
  • A light-headed feeling, like you, might pass out,

If you have symptoms of serotonin-like:

  • Fever,
  • Fast rate, muscle stiffness,
  • Loss of coordination,     
  • Vomiting, shivering,
  • Hallucinations

Serious side effects may be more likely in older age or those who are malnourished or debilitated.

Long-term use of opioid medication can affect fertility in men or women too. It is not known whether opioid effects on fertility are permanent or not.

What drug can interact with Hydromorphone

Some products that may interact with this drug include cimetidine, drugs that slow down the movement of the gut, certain pain medications such as pentazocine, nalbuphine, butorphanol.

Read and follow all the guidelines and instructions because they can be ingredients that cause drowsiness. Before using this consult your doctor for safety.