Pethidine - oral

Patient Medicine Information
Why do I need this medicine?
Pethidine is used for the relief of moderate to severe pain.
How do I take this medicine?
Take Pethidine exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.

Pethidine is available as a tablet or oral solution.

If you are taking the tablet, swallow it whole with a glass of water.

If you are taking the oral solution, mix it in one-half glass of water.
What should I do if I have forgotten to take this medicine?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.

DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
When should I not use this medicine?
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • lung disease e.g. blocked airways, damaged lung tissues, asthma, breathing problems
  • head injury
  • increased pressure inside the skull 
  • fits or seizures
  • diabetic acidosis (a complication of diabetes that occurs when your body produces too much blood acids) 
  • pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure in pregnancy) or eclampsia (fits or seizure during pregnancy due to high blood pressure)
  • phaeochromocytoma (tumour of the adrenal gland)
  • irregular or abnormal heartbeat
  • existing or suspected gastrointestinal obstruction (a condition where a part of the bowel or intestine is blocked)
  • blood disease e.g. low platelet count, blood-clotting disorder
  • severe kidney disease
  • severe liver disease
as Pethidine may not be suitable for you.

Do not take this medicine if you consume large amounts of alcohol, if you are a frequent drinker, or if you have problems related to alcohol withdrawal.

Do not take Pethidine if you are currently taking or have taken a medicine that is used to treat depression known as a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid, phenelzine and tranylcypromine in the last 14 days. Do not take this medicine with ritonavir.
What should I take note of while taking this medicine?
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • brain and spinal cord disease
  • heart disease e.g. chest pain that occurs randomly or unexpectedly, previously suffered from a heart attack
  • hypovolaemia (severe loss of body fluid)
  • abdominal disease
  • adrenal gland disease e.g. Addison’s disease
  • bile disorder e.g. inflammation of the pancreas
  • severe obesity
  • enlargement of the prostate or narrowing of urinary tract
  • mental illnesses
  • sickle cell anaemia (red blood cell disorder)
  • sleeping problems
  • thyroid disorder e.g. low activity of thyroid glands
  • drug abuse or history of drug abuse
  • mild to moderate kidney disease
  • mild to moderate liver disease
Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving this medicine to a child or the elderly. Children or elderly people may be more sensitive to the side effects.

Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Do not take Pethidine for any other purpose other than what your doctor has advised.

Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly. Regular monitoring (e.g. pain control, mood changes, blood pressure, kidney function, thyroid function) may also be needed. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have these tests.
What side effects could I experience?
Pethidine may reduce alertness or cause drowsiness. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.

Other side effects may include any of the following: nausea, vomiting, headache, palpitations, tiredness, sudden jerking of muscles, difficulty urinating, sweating, dry mouth, constipation, and rash.

This medicine may cause your blood pressure to fall suddenly when you get up from a sitting or lying down position and you may feel giddy. To minimise this problem, stand up slowly.

Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
  • shortness of breath, slow or shallow breathing, depression or tiredness
  • difficulty in breathing, slurred speech
  • agitation, confusion, seeing things that are not there, rapid pulse, sweating, flushing, fever, tremors, stiff muscles, muscle twitching, seizures, nausea or vomiting, as this could be signs of serotonin syndrome (a potentially serious drug reaction)
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Can I take this with other medicines?
Do not take Pethidine if you are currently taking or have taken a medicine to treat depression known as a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid, phenelzine, tranylcypromine in the last 14 days. Do not take this medicine if you are also taking ritonavir (medicine for HIV infection).

Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
  • certain antibiotics e.g. erythromycin, ciprofloxacin
  • certain medicines for fungal infection e.g. ketoconazole
  • medicines for TB (lung infection known as tuberculosis) e.g. isoniazid, rifampin
  • medicines for epilepsy (fits or seizure) e.g. phenytoin, phenobarbital, carbamazepine
  • medicines for mood disorders e.g. chlorpromazine
  • medicines for anxiety e.g. diazepam
  • medicines to treat depression e.g. escitalopram, venlafaxine, clomipramine, mirtazapine
  • medicines for migraine e.g. sumatriptan, zolmitriptan
  • strong painkillers e.g. nalbuphine, oxycodone
  • muscle relaxants e.g. e.g. baclofen, metaxalone
  • medicines for nausea or vomiting e.g. ondansetron, granisetron
  • water pills e.g. furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide
  • aciclovir (medicine for viral infections)
  • cimetidine (medicine for stomach ulcer)
  • St. John’s wort (herbal medicine)
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Pethidine.

Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Avoid alcohol. Alcohol intake may worsen the dizziness and drowsiness caused by Pethidine.
How should I store this medicine?
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.

Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.

This information is independently developed by MIMS based on pethidine - oral and is provided for your reference only. It is not a replacement for and should only be used in conjunction with full consultation with a licensed healthcare professional, the information provided by your pharmacist and/or the manufacturer of the medication. It may not contain all the available information you require and cannot substitute professional medical care, nor does it take into account all individual circumstances. Although great effort has been made to ensure content accuracy, we shall not be held responsible or liable for any claims or damages arising from the use or misuse of the information contained herein, its contents or omissions, or otherwise. Copyright © 2022 MIMS. All rights reserved. Powered by
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