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Hydrochloride for
Injection 5, 10, 30, 100
and 500 mg
Patient Information Leaflet
This product will usually be referred to as
Diamorphine Injection in this leaflet.

What you need to know about Diamorphine
Your doctor has decided that you need this

Please read this leaflet carefully before you
have the injection. It contains important
information. Keep the leaflet in a safe place
because you may want to read it again.
If you have any other questions, or if there is
something you donʼt understand, please ask
your doctor or nurse.
If any of the side effects gets serious, or if
you notice any side effects not listed in this
leaflet, please tell your doctor or nurse.

In this leaflet:
1. What Diamorphine Injection is and
what itʼs used for
2. Before you are given the injection
3. How the injection is given
4. Possible side effects
5. Storing the injection
6. Further information

pain as part of terminal care.

2. Before you are given the

Diamorphine Injection is not suitable for
everyone. Tell the doctor or nurse if:
• you are aware that you are allergic to
diamorphine or any other opioid analgesic
• you have a tumour of the adrenal gland
1. What Diamorphine Injection is
near your kidney
and what itʼs used for
• you feel that your breathing is very shallow
Diamorphine Injection is available in five
• you have any lung conditions
different strengths. Each ampoule contains
• you have pain caused by gallstones or
either 5, 10, 30, 100 or 500 mg of diamorphine
other problems with your bile duct
hydrochloride. Before being used the powder in • you have recently been treated for
the ampoules is mixed with water to make a
depression with drugs called monoamine
solution which will be given to you by injection.
oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs).
should also ask yourself these questions
Diamorphine hydrochloride belongs to a class
of medicines known as opioid analgesics. They before having the injection. If the answer to
any of these questions is YES, tell your
help to relieve severe pain.
doctor or nurse because Diamorphine
Diamorphine Hydrochloride for Injection 5 and
Injection might not be suitable for you.
10 mg can be used to
• relieve severe pain such as that associated Are you debilitated (very weak) or elderly?
with cancer or other terminal illnesses, or a Do you have problems with your liver or kidneys?
heart attack, or
Have you injured your head or do you have
• relieve breathlessness caused by fluid in
raised pressure inside your skull?
the lungs.
Are you an alcoholic or do you have a history of
Diamorphine Hydrochloride for Injection 30,
drug abuse?
100 and 500 mg are used to relieve severe

Do you have low blood pressure?
Do you have a mental illness?

Do you have problems with your thyroid,
adrenal glands, prostate, bladder or bowel?
Do you have diarrhoea?
Are you pregnant or breast-feeding?
Do you have a severely deformed spine?

Are you taking other medicines?
Before you have the injection tell the doctor or
nurse if you are taking any of the following
• Drugs to treat depression or mental illness

Tranquillisers or sleeping tablets

Antimuscarinic drugs such as atropine and
similar drugs.

Always tell your doctor or pharmacist about
all the medicines you are taking. This means
medicines you have bought yourself as well as
medicines on prescription from your doctor.
• If you are given diamorphine during labour
there is a risk that the baby could have
difficulty starting to breathe.
Will there be any problems with
driving or using machinery?
The injection may cause drowsiness and loss
of concentration so you should not operate a

machine or drive a vehicle.

The medicine can affect your ability to
drive as it may make you sleepy or dizzy.
• Do not drive while taking this medicine
until you know how it affects you.
• It is an offence to drive if this medicine
affects your ability to drive.
• However, you would not be committing
an offence if:
- The medicine has been prescribed to
treat a medical or dental problem and
- You have taken it according to the
instructions given by the prescriber
or in the information provided with
the medicine and
- It was not affecting your ability to
drive safely
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you
are not sure whether it is safe for you to
drive while taking this medicine.

To relieve pain caused by cancer or
other terminal illnesses: 5 – 10 mg
every 4 hours. A higher dose may be
used if necessary. The doctor will adjust
the dose as necessary to control your pain.
Following a heart attack 5 mg directly
into a vein, followed, if needed, by a
further 2.5 – 5 mg.

For fluid in the lungs 2.5 – 5 mg directly
into a vein.
Children, the elderly, people who are
debilitated or have liver or kidney
problems may be given a lower
starting dose.

4. Possible side effects

Like all medicines, Diamorphine Injection
may cause side effects in a few people.

The most serious side effect is that
your breathing or circulation may become
depressed. Your breathing may become
The doctor or nurse will prepare the
shallow or you may collapse.
injection by mixing the powder with
The most common side effects are
water. He/she will know how much to
drowsiness, feeling or being sick,
give you. You can have the injection
either under the skin, or into a muscle, constipation and sweating.
or directly into a vein.
Other side-effects, which may occur,
include dizziness, confusion,
The usual doses for adults are:
hallucinations, difficulty in passing water,

3. How the injection is given

Diamorphine hydrochloride is a
fainting or feeling faint, fast heart beat,
palpitations, weakness, difficulty sleeping, Controlled Drug and must be stored and
mood changes, reduced sex drive, dry
disposed of according to regulations.
mouth, loss of appetite, cramp, strange
taste in the mouth, skin rash, itching.
6. Further information
If you have the injections for a long time
you might become dependent on the
drug and have withdrawal symptoms if it
is stopped.

Each ampoule contains either 5, 10, 30,
100 or 500 mg of the active ingredient,
Diamorphine hydrochloride, which is a
white or off-white powder.
The medicine is prepared for use by
If you experience any other side-effects
dissolving the powder in water.
or feel that the injection is affecting you
badly, tell your doctor or nurse immediately. Packs of Diamorphine Hydrochloride for
He/she may want to adjust the dose or
Injection 5, 10 and 30 mg contain five
give you a different medicine.
2 ml ampoules.
Packs of Diamorphine Hydrochloride for
5. Storing the injection
Injection 100 and 500 mg contain five
5 ml ampoules.
Do not store above 25°C. Keep the
injection in the outer carton to protect it
The product licence holder is
from light.
Sandoz Ltd, Woolmer Way, Bordon,
Hampshire, GU35 9QE, UK.
This medicine should not be used after
the expiry date on the carton or if the
Diamorphine Injection is made by
powder in the ampoule or the solution
Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics Ltd,
are discoloured.
Gaskill Road, Speke, Liverpool L24
Diamorphine Injection must be used
9GR, UK.
immediately after the solution has been
This leaflet was approved in 08/2014.
Diamorphine Injection must be kept
in a secure place out of the reach and
sight of children.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.