Generic Name: opium preparation (OH pee um)Brand Names: Opium Deodorized, Paregoric
Opium is a narcotic derived from the seed pod of a poppy plant. It works by increasing smooth muscle tone and decreasing fluid secretions in the intestines. This slows the movement of bowel matter through the intestines.
Opium preparation (sometimes called "opium tincture" or "paregoric") is used to treat diarrhea. Opium preparation is sometimes given with other anti-diarrhea medication such as kaolin and pectic (Kaopectate).
Opium preparation may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Before you take an opium preparation, tell your doctor if you have bloody diarrhea, diarrhea with fever, diarrhea caused by taking antibiotics, inflammatory bowel disease, toxic megacolon, asthma or other breathing disorder, liver or kidney disease, a seizure disorder, enlarged prostate, urination problems, or a history of drug or alcohol addiction.Do not drink alcohol while you are taking this medication. Dangerous side effects or death can occur when alcohol is combined with opium preparation. Check your food and medicine labels to be sure these products do not contain alcohol. This medication can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.
Many drugs can interact with opium preparation. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use.
Never take this medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended by your doctor.What should I discuss with my health care provider before taking opium preparation?You should not use this medication if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a narcotic medicine (examples include codeine, methadone, morphine, Oxycontin, Darvocet, Percocet, Vicodin, Lortab, and many others). You should also not take opium preparation if you are having an asthma attack or if you have a bowel obstruction called paralytic ileus.
If you have certain conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely use this medication. Before you take an opium preparation, tell your doctor if you have:
bloody diarrhea, or diarrhea with fever;
diarrhea caused by taking antibiotics;
inflammatory bowel disease, toxic megacolon;
asthma, COPD, sleep apnea, or other breathing disorders;
liver or kidney disease;
epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
enlarged prostate or urination problems; or
a history of drug or alcohol addiction.
Older adults may be more like to have side effects of this medication.Opium preparation may be habit-forming when used over a long period of time. This medication should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Opium preparation should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.
Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Never take an opium preparation in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
This medication is usually taken 1 to 4 times daily to treat diarrhea. Follow your doctor's instructions.If you switch from using opium tincture to using paregoric, your dose will not be the same because each preparation contains a different amount of opium. Opium tincture is much stronger than paregoric and taking too much may cause serious harm.
Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.Do not stop using opium preparation suddenly after long-term use, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Talk to your doctor about how to avoid withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking this medication. Store opium preparation at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Overdose symptoms may include extreme drowsiness, feeling restless or nervous, confusion, cold and clammy skin, pinpoint pupils, seizure (convulsions), shallow breathing, slow heartbeat, fainting, or breathing that stops.
Avoid using any other anti-diarrhea medications that your doctor has not prescribed.Do not drink alcohol while you are taking this medication. Dangerous side effects or death can occur when alcohol is combined with opium preparation. Check your food and medicine labels to be sure these products do not contain alcohol. This medication can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.
severe constipation, bloating, stomach cramps;
urinating less than usual or not at all;
fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeats;
feeling like you might pass out;
weak or shallow breathing; or
Less serious side effects may include:
upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite;
dizziness, drowsiness, feeling tired or restless;
increased sweating; or
warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under your skin.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Also tell your doctor if you are using:
atropine (Atreza, Sal-Tropine), belladonna (Donnatal, and others), benztropine (Cogentin), dimenhydrinate (Dramamine), methscopolamine (Pamine), or scopolamine (Transderm-Scop);
bronchodilators such as ipratropium (Atrovent) or tiotropium (Spiriva);
naloxone (Narcan), naltrexone (ReVia);
bladder or urinary medications such as darifenacin (Enablex), flavoxate (Urispas), oxybutynin (Ditropan, Oxytrol), tolterodine (Detrol), or solifenacin (Vesicare);
irritable bowel medications such as dicyclomine (Bentyl), hyoscyamine (Anaspaz, Cystospaz, Levsin, and others), or propantheline (Pro-Banthine);
an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate); or
medicines to treat psychiatric disorders, such as chlorpromazine (Thorazine), haloperidol (Haldol), mesoridazine (Serentil), pimozide (Orap), or thioridazine (Mellaril).
This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with opium preparation. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.