What is fentanyl?

Fentanyl is the name of the active ingredient in brand-name drugs Actiq oral lozenge, Abstral sublingual tablet, Duragesic skin patch, Fentora buccal tablet, Onsolis buccal soluble film and Sublimaze injection. All formulations of this narcotic analgesic (pain reliever) work on the central nervous system to decrease pain. It is about 100 times more potent than morphine. Each patch delivers a constant amount of fentanyl, over the span of three days, and is used for continuous therapy of chronic, moderate to severe pain not successfully treated with immediate-release pain medications.The sublingual (under the tongue) tablet, buccal (cheek inside mouth) tablet, buccal film and lozenge are immediate-release formulations of this drug that are used to treat breakthrough pain in cancer patients who are receiving continuous therapy with a narcotic analgesic. Breakthrough pain is pain that breaks through analgesic therapy, or recurs despite ordinarily adequate therapy, used to control persistent pain in people with cancer. Injectable fentanyl is most often used intravenously (IV) to induce general anesthesia. It can also be used for pain control and be administered by the intramuscular (IM) route, the intrathecal (IT) route and the epidural route. Fentanyl is used only for people who are already taking other narcotic analgesics.

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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.