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Heart Attack and Opioids

Written by ColleenO, maria_rn.

In the event of a heart attack, opioid analgesics are administered to treat chest pain.

Common names include:

  • Morphine
  • Dilaudid
  • Fentanyl

Effect of Opioids on Heart Attack

Opioids can help relieve the chest pain that often follows a heart attack.

Read more details about Opioids.

Side effects

The common side effects of opioid medications include: euphoria, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, dilated pupils, constipation, itching, dizziness, and respiratory depression. You should inform your health care provider if you experience any side effects.

Warnings

Long term use of opioids can result in physical or mental dependence on the drug. A person who has become physically dependent to opioids may develop withdrawal symptoms when the medicine is discontinued. It is also possible to build tolerance to opioids when they are used for a long period. Later on, the body would need larger and larger doses for pain relief.

These drugs must be taken exactly as directed. Consult your doctor if you notice that the drugs fail to reduce your symptoms. Do not share these drugs with others because the drug may have a completely different effect on the person for whom it was not prescribed.

Opioid medications increase the effects of alcohol. Anyone taking these drugs are advised to stay away from alcoholic beverages.

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