Types Of Morphine | Morphine IR Vs. Morphine ER

Both types of morphine provide short-term pain relief with a long list of potential side effects.

Morphine is an opioid analgesic available in several prescriptions. It can be divided into extended-release and immediate-release formulations, which differ in how long the drugs cause pain relief in the body.

Common prescription drugs that contain morphine include Kadian, Kadian ER, MS Contin, Roxanol, and Morphabond. These pain medications come in pills, and may be prescribed to treat forms of chronic and severe pain.

Morphine can also be prescribed as an intravenous solution, and sees illicit use along with other prescription drugs on the illegal drug market.

Morphine IR Vs. Morphine ER

Immediate-release morphine can cause strong sedation and analgesia shortly after it is taken. IR morphine pills tend to last a shorter period of time than morphine ER formulations.

Morphine is one of many opioid drugs that sees heavy use in the United States. Along with hydromorphone, oxycodone, codeine, and many other pain medications, both types of morphine provide short-term pain relief with a long list of potential side effects.

Morphine Side Effects

Morphine can cause short-term and long-term side effects such as:

  • constipation
  • low blood pressure
  • drowsiness
  • impairment
  • dry mouth
  • morphine in breast milk (for breastfeeding mothers)
  • loss of appetite
  • central nervous system depression
  • breathing problems

Even proper use of opioids can cause side effects, and these side effects can be seen in both morphine IR and ER formulations. Morphine can also be habit-forming, causing physical dependence and withdrawal symptoms in patients who take the drug for long periods of time.

Morphine Overdose

It is also possible to overdose on any formulation of morphine. Overdose symptoms include breathing problems, fainting, and an irregular heartbeat.

An overdose can be life-threatening without proper treatment. Administration of naloxone while waiting for professional help to arrive can be crucial in saving a victim’s life.

Morphine IR Brand Names & Effects

Brand name morphine prescriptions that come in the form of immediate-release tablets include:

  • Roxanol
  • Oramorph
  • Kadian

The effects of morphine felt by the patient may become stronger depending on the dose they receive. Healthcare providers will likely assess the patient’s medical history and risk for serious side effects to determine the dose of morphine they should take.

Risk factors such as a person’s age, concomitant drug use of certain drugs, or history of paralytic ileus may put them at a higher risk of serious side effects.

Morphine ER Brand Names & Effects

Brand name prescriptions that contain extended-release morphine formulations include:

  • MS Contin
  • Avinza (discontinued)
  • Arymo ER
  • Kadian ER
  • Morphabond ER

Arymo ER is an abuse-deterrent formulation of morphine. It is designed to be less effective when crushed, snorted, or as a target of drug abuse in any capacity. Abuse-deterrent formulations of morphine were approved by the FDA in 2017.

Other Types Of Morphine

Intravenous morphine sulfate is a prescription solution that some patients can inject for pain management. Injected morphine reaches the bloodstream faster than pills, allowing the drug to affect the central nervous system faster.

Morphine is also sold illegally. Taking morphine without a prescription is a form of substance abuse. Abusing morphine may increase your risk of serious side effects such as respiratory depression, opioid overdose, and dangerous drug interactions.

Opioid Use Disorder Treatment

Long-term morphine use can cause an opioid use disorder, where a patient is unable to stop taking morphine though it may be a detriment to their health.

Dedicated treatment programs offer a path to sobriety through behavioral therapy, medication-assisted treatment, dietary supplements, and other methods.

Contact Northeast Addictions Treatment Center to find out if our opioid use treatment program works for you or your loved ones.

Written by
Northeast Addition Editorial Team

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This page does not provide medical advice.

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