fentanyl patch (Duragesic)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What is the dosage for fentanyl transdermal system?

  • Patches should be applied to a flat, non-irritated area on the upper torso.
  • The area of application should be clean and washed with water only prior to application.
  • The patch should be applied immediately after removing it from the package and pressed firmly against the skin for 10 to 20 seconds especially around the edges.
  • Patches should never be cut or otherwise damaged.
  • Doses required to control pain vary widely among patients.
  • The recommended dose is 25 to 100 mcg/hour patch applied every 72 hours.
  • The manufacturer considers a fentanyl transdermal dose of 100 µg/hour approximately equivalent to 360 mg/day of oral morphine.

Which drugs or supplements interact with fentanyl transdermal system?

The use of fentanyl with other central nervous system depressants can increase the ability of fentanyl to depress breathing, depress the brain, sedate, and lower blood pressure.

Other drugs that may result in slow heart rates in patients when used with fentanyl, and therefore, should be used cautiously include:

Cimetidine (Tagamet) when used with fentanyl can cause confusion, disorientation, or seizures due to impairment in breathing and brain function.

What else should I know about fentanyl transdermal system?

What preparations of fentanyl transdermal system are available?

Transdermal systems labeled as delivering 12, 25, 50, 37.5, 62.5, 75, 87.5, or 100 mcg/hour.

How should I keep fentanyl transdermal system stored?

  • Patches should be stored at room temperature below 30 C (86 F). Used patches should be folded in half with the sticky sides together, and then flushed down the toilet.
  • Patients must avoid exposing the patches to excessive heat as this promotes the release of fentanyl from the patch and increases the absorption of fentanyl through the skin which can result in fatal overdose.

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/30/2016

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