Harmful Effects and Addiction to Demerol

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By Cristina Utti

Demerol is a fast-acting opioid drug that has been used for many decades as a pain reliever for moderate to severe pain.

Demerol is mostly prescribed in hospital settings to relieve pain that patients have after they have undergone surgery. It contains meperidine, a mu-agonist opioid with an abuse danger similar to morphine. Those who take Demerol in a hospital setting are much less likely to become addicted because the amount is controlled and the time period prescribed is short. Those who are prescribed Demerol for longer periods of use build up a tolerance to the drug and often ask for higher and higher dosages. Demerol can be highly addictive because along with altering the body’s perception to pain, it produces feelings of giddiness and pleasure. Common street names are: Juice, Dillies, D, or Dust.

Some common side effects of Demerol are:
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Sweating
  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of interest in sex

Long-term use of the drug can cause permanent changes to the brain receptors, which is why Demerol is not prescribed for long-term use. When these brain changes occur, individuals will have strong cravings for the drug. Serious side effects can occur if taking more than the recommended dosage.

If you or a loved one is experiencing any of the side effects listed below, consult a physician immediately.
  • Severe weakness or dizziness
  • Feeling like you are going to pass out
  • Fainting
  • Cold or clammy skin
  • Uncontrollable muscle movements
  • Confusion
  • Fever
  • Fast heart rate
  • Hallucinations
  • Convulsions
Abuse of Demerol causes risk of overdose and death.

If you think that you or a loved one may be addicted to Demerol, it is highly recommended to detox in a controlled professional setting because the withdrawal symptoms can be severe. Withdrawal from Demerol can cause confusion, mood changes, nausea, and vomiting. Individuals with high amounts of Demerol in their body should taper off slowly. Some drug treatment centers may use supplemental drugs to ease the discomfort of withdrawal. Treatment usually lasts a few months.

If you or someone you love are addicted to prescription drugs, please contact us now at 800.218.6727. We can help.

Side Effects of Demerol (Meperidine) Drug Center – RxList. (n.d.). Retrieved February, 2016.