Can I use MS Contin if I have a history of mental illness?

People with a history of mental illness can take the pain medication MS Contin (morphine) but need to be aware of some extra risks. MS Contin is habit-forming, and people with a history of mental illness are at an increased risk of abusing it. If you fall into this category, your doctor will monitor you very carefully while you're taking MS Contin.

The same risk applies to people who have or have had an addiction disorder. Besides being habit-forming, MS Contin is dangerous if taken along with alcohol or any medication that contains alcohol. Alcohol can make the body absorb the drug too rapidly, so that extremely high amounts enter the bloodstream, possibly causing a fatal overdose.

You should not take MS Contin if you take, or have taken in the last 14 days, an antidepressant that is a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as tranylcypromine (Parnate), phenelzine (Nardil), selegiline (Emsam) or isocarboxazid (Marplan). MAOIs can cause MS Contin to be more potent, which can lead to severe side effects and even a fatal overdose.

Tell your doctor about all medicines (prescription and nonprescription) and dietary supplements you take, especially if you use any substances from the following categories. This information may affect the amount of MS Contin, if any, your doctor decides to give you:

  • tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, amoxapine (Asendin), clomipramine (Anafranil), desipramine (Norpramin), doxepin (Adapin, Sinequan), imipramine (Tofranil), nortriptyline (Aventyl, Pamelor), protriptyline (Vivactil) and trimipramine (Surmontil)
  • tranquilizers, sedatives or sleeping pills
  • muscle relaxers
  • street drugs
  • antipsychotics
  • antiseizure medicines
  • antinausea medicines
  • blood thinners
  • antihistamines (cold and allergy medicines)
  • beta-blockers
  • quinidine
  • other opioid pain medications
  • cimetidine
  • buprenorphine
  • butorphanol
  • nalbuphine
  • pentazocine

Continue Learning about Opiate Agonists

What should I avoid doing while on opioid medication for chronic pain?
Travis M. Hendry, MDTravis M. Hendry, MD
Take opioid pain medication (strong medications that affect the way your brain handles pain sign...
More Answers
What opioid medications can help treat severe headaches?
Egilius L. Spierings, MDEgilius L. Spierings, MD
If you suffer severe headaches frequently, if not daily, one strategy to consider is a long-acti...
More Answers
How often are opioids prescribed in the US?
The Society of Thoracic SurgeonsThe Society of Thoracic Surgeons
The amount of opioid prescriptions in the US peaked in 2012 at more than 255 million and a prescribi...
More Answers
What should I know before taking opioids?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
Before prescribing an opioid for low back pain, your doctor should order a urine test to check for o...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.