Generic name: Hydromorphone Liquid [ hye-droe-MOR-fone ]
Brand name: Dilaudid
Drug class: Opioids (narcotic analgesics)
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Mar 8, 2023.
- This medicine is a strong pain drug that can put you at risk for addiction, abuse, and misuse. Misuse or abuse of hydromorphone liquid can lead to overdose and death. Talk with your doctor.
- You will be watched closely to make sure you do not misuse, abuse, or become addicted to hydromorphone liquid.
- This medicine may cause very bad and sometimes deadly breathing problems. Call your doctor right away if you have slow, shallow, or trouble breathing.
- The chance of very bad and sometimes deadly breathing problems may be greater when you first start hydromorphone liquid or anytime your dose is raised.
- Even one dose of hydromorphone liquid may be deadly if it is taken by someone else or by accident, especially in children. If hydromorphone liquid is taken by someone else or by accident, get medical help right away.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- This medicine has an opioid drug in it. Severe side effects have happened when opioid drugs were used with benzodiazepines or other drugs that may make you drowsy or slow your actions. This includes slow or troubled breathing and death. Benzodiazepines include drugs like alprazolam, diazepam, and lorazepam. Benzodiazepines may be used to treat many health problems like anxiety, trouble sleeping, or seizures. If you have questions, talk with your doctor.
- Many drugs interact with hydromorphone liquid and can raise the chance of side effects like deadly breathing problems. Talk with your doctor and pharmacist to make sure it is safe to use hydromorphone liquid with all of your drugs.
- Do not take with alcohol or products that have alcohol. Unsafe and sometimes deadly effects may happen.
- Get medical help right away if you feel very sleepy, very dizzy, or if you pass out. Caregivers or others need to get medical help right away if the patient does not respond, does not answer or react like normal, or will not wake up.
- Be sure that you know how to measure your dose. Dosing errors can lead to accidental overdose and death. If you have any questions, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
- Using hydromorphone liquid for a long time during pregnancy may lead to withdrawal in the newborn baby. This can be life-threatening. Talk with the doctor.
Uses of Hydromorphone Liquid:
- It is used to ease pain.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Hydromorphone Liquid?
- If you are allergic to hydromorphone liquid; any part of hydromorphone liquid; or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had.
- If you have any of these health problems: Lung or breathing problems like asthma, trouble breathing, or sleep apnea; high levels of carbon dioxide in the blood; or stomach or bowel block or narrowing.
- If you are taking any of these drugs: Buprenorphine, butorphanol, nalbuphine, or pentazocine.
- If you have taken certain drugs for depression or Parkinson's disease in the last 14 days. This includes isocarboxazid, phenelzine, tranylcypromine, selegiline, or rasagiline. Very high blood pressure may happen.
- If you are taking any of these drugs: Linezolid or methylene blue.
- If you are breast-feeding or plan to breast-feed.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with hydromorphone liquid.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take hydromorphone liquid with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Hydromorphone Liquid?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take hydromorphone liquid. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how hydromorphone liquid affects you.
- To lower the chance of feeling dizzy or passing out, rise slowly if you have been sitting or lying down. Be careful going up and down stairs.
- Do not take more than what your doctor told you to take. Taking more than you are told may raise your chance of very bad side effects.
- Do not take hydromorphone liquid with other strong pain drugs or if you are using a pain patch without talking to your doctor first.
- Have your blood work checked if you are on hydromorphone liquid for a long time. Talk with your doctor.
- If you are allergic to sulfites, talk with your doctor. Some products have sulfites.
- This medicine may raise the chance of seizures in some people, including people who have had seizures in the past. Talk to your doctor to see if you have a greater chance of seizures while taking hydromorphone liquid.
- Long-term use of an opioid drug may lead to lower sex hormone levels. Call your doctor if you have a lowered interest in sex, fertility problems, no menstrual period (women), or change in sex ability (men).
- Long-term or regular use of opioid drugs like hydromorphone liquid may lead to dependence. Lowering the dose or stopping hydromorphone liquid all of a sudden may cause a greater risk of withdrawal or other severe problems. Talk to your doctor before you lower the dose or stop hydromorphone liquid. You will need to follow your doctor’s instructions. Tell your doctor if you have more pain, mood changes, thoughts of suicide, or any other bad effects.
- If you have been taking hydromorphone liquid for a long time or at high doses, it may not work as well and you may need higher doses to get the same effect. This is known as tolerance. Call your doctor if hydromorphone liquid stops working well. Do not take more than ordered.
- If you are 65 or older, use hydromorphone liquid with care. You could have more side effects.
- This medicine may cause harm to the unborn baby if you take it while you are pregnant. If you are pregnant or you get pregnant while taking hydromorphone liquid, call your doctor right away.
How is this medicine (Hydromorphone Liquid) best taken?
Use hydromorphone liquid as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- Take with or without food. Take with food if it causes an upset stomach.
- Take by mouth only.
- Do not inject or snort hydromorphone liquid. Doing any of these things can cause very bad side effects like trouble breathing and death from overdose.
- Measure liquid doses carefully. Use the measuring device that comes with hydromorphone liquid. If there is none, ask the pharmacist for a device to measure hydromorphone liquid.
- Do not use a household teaspoon or tablespoon to measure hydromorphone liquid. Doing so could lead to the dose being too high.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- If you take hydromorphone liquid on a regular basis, take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
- Many times hydromorphone liquid is taken on an as needed basis. Do not take more often than told by the doctor.
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Very bad dizziness or passing out.
- Feeling confused.
- Severe constipation or stomach pain. These may be signs of a severe bowel problem.
- Fast, slow, or abnormal heartbeat.
- Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
- Mood changes.
- Trouble passing urine.
- Not able to control eye movements.
- Trouble controlling body movements.
- Change in eyesight.
- Chest pain or pressure.
- Change in balance.
- Memory problems or loss.
- If you are planning to harm yourself or the want to harm yourself gets worse.
- Swelling in the arms or legs.
- A severe and sometimes deadly problem called serotonin syndrome may happen if you take hydromorphone liquid with certain other drugs. Call your doctor right away if you have agitation; change in balance; confusion; hallucinations; fever; fast or abnormal heartbeat; flushing; muscle twitching or stiffness; seizures; shivering or shaking; sweating a lot; severe diarrhea, upset stomach, or throwing up; or severe headache.
- Taking an opioid drug like hydromorphone liquid may lead to a rare but very bad adrenal gland problem. Call your doctor right away if you have very bad dizziness or passing out, very bad upset stomach or throwing up, or if you feel less hungry, very tired, or very weak.
What are some other side effects of Hydromorphone Liquid?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Feeling dizzy, sleepy, tired, or weak.
- Dry mouth.
- Upset stomach or throwing up.
- Sweating a lot.
- Stomach pain.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at https://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Hydromorphone Liquid?
- Store at room temperature.
- Protect from light.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time hydromorphone liquid is refilled. If you have any questions about hydromorphone liquid, please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
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