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What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings

Fentanyl Overview

Written by FoundHealth.

(FEN ta nil)

U.S. Brand Names

Actiq®; Duragesic®; Fentora®; Onsolis™; Sublimaze®

Canadian Brand Names

Actiq®; Duragesic MAT; Duragesic®; Fentanyl Citrate Injection, USP; Novo-Fentanyl; RAN™-Fentanyl Transdermal System; ratio-Fentanyl

Mexican Brand Names

Durogesic; Fentanest

Pharmacologic Category

Analgesic, Opioid; Anilidopiperidine Opioid; General Anesthetic

What key warnings should I know about before taking this medicine?

• Patients receiving this medicine should be monitored for misuse, abuse, and addiction.

• This warning is for Fentora®, lozenges, (eg, Actiq®), or Onsolis™ only. It is for cancer pain that is poorly treated by other pain medicines. It is not to be used for pain caused by surgery. Keep away from children. Do not use in children. It may slow down breathing too much if not used correctly.

• Onsolis™ is available only through the Focus Program.

• This warning is for the skin patch only. It is only used to treat lasting, chronic pain that cannot be handled by other treatments. It is only for use in patients who already take opioids (such as morphine, oxycodone, or hydromorphone) and are used to them. It is not for mild pain or pain that comes and goes. It is not for use in children younger than 2 years of age. Do not use a damaged or cut patch.

• This medicine does not mix well with many medicines. Serious reactions may occur. Check all medicines with healthcare provider.

• Please read the medication guide.

Reasons not to take this medicine

• If you have an allergy to fentanyl or any other part of this medicine.

• Tell healthcare provider if you are allergic to any medicine. Make sure to tell about the allergy and how it affected you. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other symptoms involved.

• If you have any of the following conditions: Asthma, intestinal blockage, or severe lung disease.

How does it work?

• Fentanyl binds to brain receptors, relieving pain. It decreases the feeling of pain and a person's response to pain.

How is it best taken?

All forms:

• Drink plenty of noncaffeine-containing liquid unless told to drink less liquid by healthcare provider.


• This medicine is given as a shot into a vein.

Skin patch:

• Do not use patches that are damaged or cut.

• If you or anyone else comes in contact with the gel, wash the affected area with large amounts of water. Do not use soap.

• Wash hands before and after use.

• You can bathe, shower, or swim after applying.

• Apply patch to clean, dry, healthy skin on the chest, back, upper leg, or upper arm.

• Clip hair at site before putting patch on. Do not shave.

• Move patch site with each patch.

• If the patch falls off, replace with a new one.

• If patch loosens, apply tape over it to hold in place.


• Place lozenge in your mouth between the cheek and lower gum.

• Suck oral lozenge. Do not chew, break, or crush. Do not swallow whole.

Cheek film:

• Wet inside of cheek using tongue or water.

• Place film inside mouth on wet cheek. Hold for 5 seconds so sticks to cheek. Let dissolve.

• Do not chew or swallow.

• You may drink liquids 5 minutes after using.

• You may eat after film dissolves.

Cheek tablet:

• Place tablet in your mouth above a rear molar tooth between the upper cheek and gum and let dissolve.

• Do not chew, break, or crush.

What do I do if I miss a dose? (does not apply to patients in the hospital)

• Use a missed dose as soon as possible.

• If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your regular schedule.

• Many times this medicine is taken on an as needed basis.

What should I monitor?

• Change in condition being treated. Is it better, worse, or about the same?

• Keep a diary of pain control.

• Bowel movements.

How should I store this medicine?

• Store at room temperature. Do not freeze.

• After you remove a skin patch, be sure to fold the sticky sides of the patch together.

• Throw away unused patches when they are no longer needed. Remove them from pouch, remove liner, and fold in half.

• Throw away any unused medicine by flushing down toilet or sink.

• Use Fentora® tablets right after opening.

• Use Onsolis™ film right after opening.

General statements

• If you have a life-threatening allergy, wear allergy identification at all times.

• Do not share your medicine with others and do not take anyone else's medicine.

• Keep all medicine out of the reach of children and pets.

• Keep a list of all your medicines (prescription, natural products, supplements, vitamins, over-the-counter) with you. Give this list to healthcare provider (doctor, nurse, nurse practitioner, pharmacist, physician assistant).

• Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or in Canada to Health Canada's Canada Vigilance Program at 1-866-234-2345.

• Talk with healthcare provider before starting any new medicine, including over-the-counter, natural products, or vitamins.

Created: 2006-10-13 12:34:06.0

Modified: 2010-03-19 14:43:38.0

Lexi-PALS TM © (1977)-(2007) Lexi-Comp, Inc. All rights reserved.



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