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How can I minimize the side effects of Exalgo?

You can minimize potential side effects of the powerful pain medication Exalgo (hydromorphone) by taking it exactly as your doctor prescribes. Don't take a larger dose, take it more frequently or take it for longer periods than instructed. Take Exalgo at the same time every day and don't take more than one dose within a 24-hour period. If you miss a dose, skip it. Wait until the next day to resume your regular schedule. 

Swallow Exalgo tablets whole with a full glass of water. Do not break, chew, dissolve or crush them; otherwise you'll release too much of this drug, which is derived from morphine, into your system at once. The result could be overdose and even death.

Don't drink alcohol or use medications -- over-the-counter or prescription -- that contain alcohol while taking Exalgo. Alcohol and Exalgo can interact to bring about a drop in blood pressure, extreme sleepiness and respiratory depression -- in which breathing becomes dangerously slow. Ultimately these side effects can lead to coma and even death.

To minimize or prevent nausea while on Exalgo, take it with food or milk. Like other pain relievers, Exalgo can cause constipation. Ask your doctor about laxatives, stool softeners and dietary changes that might help to alleviate this side effect.

Do not stop taking Exalgo suddenly. Because it can be habit-forming, you may experience withdrawal symptoms. When it's time for you to quit taking Exalgo, your doctor will help you to taper off the drug gradually.

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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.