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Can I use fentanyl if I have a history of asthma?

Stacy Wiegman, PharmD
Pharmacy Specialist

You may be able to use Actiq (fentanyl) if you have a history of asthma, but you should tell your doctor so he or she can monitor your reaction to Actiq carefully. Actiq is a quick-acting synthetic opiate for the treatment of breakthrough pain in cancer patients who are already being treated with narcotics on a regular basis. Like many opiates, it can depress the central nervous system, slowing breathing and causing breathing problems. If you have a history of asthma or any other chronic lung problem (such as chronic bronchitis or emphysema), you may be at higher risk for breathing problems from using Actiq.

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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.