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It is used to treat patient's with moderate to severe pain (especially in pain associated with cancer, myocardial infarction (heart attack) and surgery).

How it works

Morphine belongs to class of drugs called opioids. It acts on the brain and nervous system and reduces the responsiveness to pain. Morphine binds and activate the mu, kappa and delta receptors in brain responsible for analgesia (reducing pain).

Common side effects

Vomiting, Nausea, Nervousness, Agitation, Confusion, Constriction of pupil, Diarrhoea, Abdominal pain, Drowsiness, Dry mouth, Difficulty in urination, Dizziness, Headache, Increased sweating, Loss of appetite, Mood changes, Weight loss


Expert advice

• Inform your doctor if you have severe asthma, a blockage in stomach or intestines, or obstruction in bowel. 
• Do not drive or operate machinery when on treatment with morphine as it may cause drowsiness.
• Tell your doctor if you are or planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding.
• Do not take morhine if allergic to it or any of its ingredients.
• Patients with acute respiratory depression, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, acute alcoholism, risk of paralytic ileus, acute ulcerative colitis, acute abdomen, delayed gastric emptying, raised intra-cranial pressure and head injury, and pheochromocytoma should not take morphine. 
• Children <2 years of age should not be given morphine.
• Pregnant or breastfeeding women should not be given morphine.

Frequently asked questions


Q. Is Morphine opiate and addictive? 
Yes morphine is opiate drug which develops quick tolerance leading to addiction.
Q. Is Morphine categorized as opioid and narcotic?
Yes morphine is categorized as narcotic analgesic which works by binding to opioid receptors, which are present in the central and peripheral nervous system.

Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)