Alphaprodine: Common Uses of Drug, Signs and Symptoms of Abuse

Young man struggling with addiction

Contributor: Crystal Karges, MS, RDN, IBCLC Special Projects Coordinator at Eating Disorder Hope/Addiction Hope

When it comes to prescription-based painkillers, many individuals may be more familiar with drugs such
as Oxycontin, Percocet, and more. However, as opioid based painkillers become more difficult to obtain, people seeking out these types of medications, whether for therapeutic or recreational purposes, may be turning to lesser known prescription drugs, such as Alphaprodine.

Common Uses of the Drug Alphaprodine

Mother that used alphaprodine during childbirth.Alphaprodine, also marketed under the brand name of Nisentil, is a narcotic analgesic that is similar to the drug morphine and pethidine. This pain relieving medication is often used for pain management in childbirth and labor as well as for other surgical procedures. In addition, this medication may be used in the dentistry setting to help effectively manage pain associated with dental procedures.

Even at a normal dosage that is typically used for therapeutic treatments, the use of alphaprodine can potentially cause distressing side effects, such as respiratory depression, and other side effects, such as gastrointestinal upset, skin irritation and more.

Signs of Misuse and Abuse

Friends discussing alphaprodine abuse. If you or someone you care for has been taking the prescription drug Alphaprodine, it is important to understand how and why this particular medication is being used. Many times, this prescription drug is given in the setting of acute care, such as for pain relief during a minor surgical procedure.

If you are aware that someone you care for is taking this prescription medication for purposes of getting high or “numbing effects”, be sure to have a discussion with your loved one about your concerns.

As an opioid based drug, this medication can be highly addictive and result in adverse effects and medical complications. Expressing your concerns about possible drug misuse behaviors is essential for helping your loved one understand the potentially dangerous consequences associated with their behaviors. Working with an addiction specialist can be helpful in overcoming a possible addiction to alphaprodine.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

If you have been in recovery from an addiction to a pharmaceutical painkiller, what resources were helpful to you in recovery?

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About the Author: Crystal is a Masters-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) with a specialty focus in eating disorders, maternal/child health and wellness, and intuitive eating. Combining clinical experience with a love of social media and writing, Crystal serves as the Special Projects Coordinator for Eating Disorder Hope/Addiction Hope, where her passion to help others find recovery and healing is integrated into each part of her work.

As a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor, Crystal has dedicated her career to helping others establish a healthy relationship with food and body through her work with EDH/AH and nutrition private practice.

The opinions and views of our guest contributors are shared to provide a broad perspective of addictions. These are not necessarily the views of Addiction Hope, but an effort to offer discussion of various issues by different concerned individuals.

We at Addiction Hope understand that addictions result from a combination of environmental and genetic factors. If you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction, please know that there is hope for you, and seek immediate professional help.

Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on April 24, 2016
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