What should I tell my doctor before taking an opioid medication?

Dr. Travis M. Hendry, MD
Orthopedic Surgeon

Before you start taking an opioid medication, talk to your doctor and pharmacist. Follow these tips:

  • Tell your doctor about all the medications you take. Bring a list of the prescriptions, vitamins and herbal pills you take. This helps your doctor make sure your pain medication doesn't combine with your other medicines in a bad way.
  • Talk with your doctor about your goals for reducing your pain and functioning better. You and your doctor can make sure the medication is helping you meet these goals. If not, your doctor can try a different medication or strategy.
  • Talk with your doctor about your prescription. Ask questions. Be sure you understand what you're taking, why you're taking it and how to take it. Ask your doctor about the benefits, risks and alternatives.

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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.