Generic Name:

hydromorphone, Oral tablet

All Brands

  • Exalgo
SECTION 1 of 5

Highlights for hydromorphone

Oral tablet
HYDROMORPHONE (hye droe MOR fone) is a pain reliever. It is used to treat moderate to severe pain. It is used by people who have been taking an opioid or narcotic pain medicine.
This drug also comes in other forms, including Oral SolutionRectal SuppositoryInjectable Solution
3 4 5
Talk to your healthcare provider if you have any of these conditions.
Know what to watch for and get tips for reducing your risks while taking this drug.
SECTION 2 of 5

hydromorphone Side Effects

Oral tablet

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • breathing problems
  • changes in vision
  • confusion
  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
  • seizures
  • slow or fast heartbeat
  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
  • trouble with balance, talking, or walking
  • unusually weak or tired

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (Report these to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome.):

  • difficulty sleeping
  • drowsiness
  • dry mouth
  • flushing
  • headache
  • itching
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea, vomiting
SECTION 3 of 5

hydromorphone May Interact with Other Medications

Oral tablet

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:

  • alcohol or any product that contains alcohol
  • MAOIs like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • antihistamines for allergy, cough and cold
  • barbiturates, like phenobarbital
  • medicines for anesthesia
  • medicines for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disturbancesmedicines for sleep
  • muscle relaxants
  • naltrexone, naloxone
  • narcotic medicines (opiates) for pain
  • phenothiazines like chlorpromazine, mesoridazine, prochlorperazine, thioridazine
  • tramadol
Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.
SECTION 4 of 5

How to Use hydromorphone

Oral tablet

Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Do not break, crush, or chew the tablets. Do not take a tablet that is not whole. A broken or crushed tablet can be very dangerous. You may get too much medicine. Also do not take this medicine with alcohol or any drugs containing alcohol. If the medicine upsets your stomach, take it with food or milk. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take the medicine at the same time each day. Do not take more than you are told to take.

A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • drug abuse or addiction
  • head injury
  • heart disease
  • if you frequently drink alcohol containing drinks
  • kidney disease or problems urinating
  • liver disease
  • lung or breathing disease, like asthma
  • seizures
  • stomach problems
  • taken an MAOI like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, or Parnate in last 14 days
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to hydromorphone, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding
What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Tell your doctor or health care professional if your pain does not go away, if it gets worse, or if you have new or a different type of pain. You may develop tolerance to the medicine. Tolerance means that you will need a higher dose of the medicine for pain relief. Tolerance is normal and is expected if you take this medicine for a long time.

Do not suddenly stop taking your medicine because you may develop a severe reaction. Your body becomes used to the medicine. This does NOT mean you are addicted. Addiction is a behavior related to getting and using a drug for a non-medical reason. If you have pain, you have a medical reason to take pain medicine. Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to take. If your doctor wants you to stop the medicine, the dose will be slowly lowered over time to avoid any side effects.

Do not drink, eat, or take anything that may contain alcohol. Alcohol makes this medicine work incorrectly. You may have very dangerous side effects if you take the medicine with any alcohol.

You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medicine. Avoid alcoholic drinks.

There are different types of narcotic medicines (opiates) for pain. If you take more than one type at the same time, you may have more side effects. Give your health care provider a list of all medicines you use. Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to take. Do not take more medicine than directed. Call emergency for help if you have problems breathing.

This medicine will cause constipation. Try to have a bowel movement at least every 2 to 3 days. If you do not have a bowel movement for 3 days, call your doctor or health care professional.

Your mouth may get dry. Chewing sugarless gum or sucking hard candy, and drinking plenty of water may help. Contact your doctor if the problem does not go away or is severe.

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children. This medicine can be abused. Keep your medicine in a safe place to protect it from theft. Do not share this medicine with anyone. Selling or giving away this medicine is dangerous and against the law.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Keep container tightly closed.

This medicine may cause accidental overdose and death if it is taken by other adults, children, or pets. Flush any unused medicine down the toilet to reduce the chance of harm. Do not use the medicine after the expiration date.

What does the pill look like?

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SECTION 5 of 5

How Much Does hydromorphone Cost?

Oral tablet

We've partnered with GoodRx so you can compare prices, find discounts and save up to 80% on your next prescription. Check out the low coupon prices below — no insurance required.

Compare prices and save up to 80% on your next refill!

Lowest price for hydromorphone

Walmart $7.89
Sams Club $7.89
Publix $10.29
These prices represent the lowest priced national pharmacies for hydromorphone on GoodRx. They may be lower than your insurance.

Enter your zip code to find the best deal near you.

These prices represent the lowest priced national pharmacies for hydromorphone on GoodRx. They may be lower than your insurance.

Last Updated: July 22, 2014

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