/ Morphine

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mypyrex - on 01 Apr 2013
When used medicinally, ie for cancer pain relief, does anyone know if it causes hallucinations?
Dauphin - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

it can, it is pretty dependent on the individual patient sensitivity and dose. there are plenty of synthetic alternatives with less hallucinatory activity.

d
redsonja - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: yes it did with my mam. is this about your SiL?
Brownie on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: Yes, did for me anyway for some weeks after 24rs use following an operation. Also for someone else I know. We both saw monsters under the bed upon wakening - like when I was a child.
marsbar - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: I'm not an expert, but I think it can, I remember someone I knew having it in A+E and it seemed sort of like they were sleep talking about things that weren't happening. I think its probably normal, and although upsetting for those around, probably quite pleasant for her to not be in pain.
hms - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: I had it after having an emergency caesarian, and it certainly caused me to hallucinate. It was a very scary & disconcerting experience - enough so that when I was carted off to hospital in screaming agony after damaging my back in a bouldering fall I would not have the morphine they offered me and made do with gas and air instead!
mypyrex - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to heidi123:
> (In reply to mypyrex) yes it did with my mam. is this about your SiL?
Yes
Coel Hellier - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

Yes, I've suffered hallucinations from morphine, after an operation. They were not nice. It may depend on dose and so on.
Cameron94 on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: Not for me I was fine apart from the pain still making itself known!
Dauphin - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to Dauphin:

I work with it daily in critical care and worked for many years in cancer care - there are plenty of good synthetic alternatives available if the hallucinations are unpleasant or unsettling. No need to be in pain.

D
Coel Hellier - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to Cameron94:

> Not for me I was fine apart from the pain still making itself known!

Interesting, I get an impression that it doesn't alter the mind if the dose is just at or below the level needed to remove the pain, but it does above that level.

I was fine on it for 2 days, after a major operation, then started getting problems about the third day, as my need for pain relief dropped. Reducing the dose then removed the problems again.

The one thing I do wonder, though, is that given that the hallucinations that I suffered were rather nasty, why on earth does anyone take the stuff for pleasure??
pec on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: I was on it for about a week after an operation, I only found out when they told me they were taking me of it. It had no noticeable effect, apart from pain relief, but then I don't know how much pain I'd have been in without it, presuamably a lot.
I had it for a day after another operation, again with no apparent side effects.
mypyrex - on 01 Apr 2013
The reason I ask is that we know SiL is on morphine and she's been saying thing like "What's that yellow car doing in the ward" She's then laughing when she realises there's nothing there. She's the bravest person I know at the moment.
redsonja - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: my mam just laughed at herself aswell. she saw lots of vivid colours and I teased her that she was on LSD! your SiL sounds an amazing person mypyrex.
The Lemming - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

My other half had ICU psychosis when she was in Intensive Care. That was an interesting event.
Jimbo W on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

Yes it can cause hallucinations, but generally shouldn't if the dose has been titrated to just above that required to deal with the pain. Just mention it to the nurses, they may need to alter the dose slightly, especially if the hallucinations are unpleasant and distressing your SiL.
kathrync - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

My Mum was on morphine after an operation and kept going on about how nice the paisley wallpaper was and how she might get something similar in the living room. The walls were painted magnolia.

I would class that as a yes.

Jimbo W on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

> Interesting, I get an impression that it doesn't alter the mind if the dose is just at or below the level needed to remove the pain, but it does above that level.

Yes, that is usually correct.

> The one thing I do wonder, though, is that given that the hallucinations that I suffered were rather nasty, why on earth does anyone take the stuff for pleasure??

Quite so. I was once given a large bolus dose of morphine for pain relief and while the pain disappeared almost instantly, it felt like I'd been pushed off a cliff / sense of free fall (without the expected visual cues of rope, harness, cliff, exposure). It was really unpleasant in the extreme. It felt like I had completely lost control of my own body and senses, and then hallucinations also occurred. To reassure mypyrex re: SiL, I'd been given me way way too much! Outwith pain relief, I really don't understand what is pleasurable about this drug.
Dauphin - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to Jimbo W:

plenty of pain in the world - physical and psychic

Life, as we find it, is too hard for us; it brings us too many pains, disappointments and impossible tasks. In order to bear it we cannot dispense with palliative measures... There are perhaps three such measures: powerful deflections, which cause us to make light of our misery; substitutive satisfactions, which diminish it; and intoxicating substances, which make us insensible to it.

Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents, 1929)

D
mgco3 - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: Fantastic drug. I broke my leg in 2005 and had seven operations over 2 years to put it all back together so had my fair share of the stuff.

Yes, it causes hallucinations. I spent an afternoon in the high dependancy unit watching the mains and aerial sockets move about the wall which in turn changed into moving waves.

I thought that I was completely lucid the whole time but my wife later told me that I was talking absolute rubbish!!!

Coel Hellier - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to Jimbo W:

My story is that for the first two nights after a major operation I had no problems with it, then on the third night I got into quite a disturbed state of mind, thinking that the patient in the bed opposite me was the Anti-Christ who was about to kill us all. It wasn't nice.

Through most of the next day I was ok, but when trying to get to sleep that night, whenever I closed my eyes my whole vision field was filled with an inky black oozing malevolence. Even though I was desperately in need of sleep, this was too nasty for me to close my eyes. At that point I called a nurse who reduced the dose to half, and I was then fine and fell asleep.

Would I be willing to take it again if needed? Yes, because it is utterly wonderful for pain relief, almost like magic. But I would take a more proactive approach to talking to the nurses about the dose level, and cutting it down at the first sign of issues.
stroppygob - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: I was given morphine following a bike smash a couple of years back, did get any hallucinations. Wouldn't have minded some though.
Skip - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

Personally i've had morphine once. Completely numbed the pain and gave me no hallucinations, just a wonderful content half asleep, half awake dream like feeling.

Very nice.
elsewhere on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:
Yes, my relative reverted to WW2 & tried to strangle the poor bugger in the next bed thinking he was a German. Things then settled down though.
Caralynh - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

I've given morphine to many people, but never had anyone have that reaction. However, we use low doses (<20mg), and when Jez had his shoulder op, he thought the Star Wars movie was being reinacted round his bed.
joan cooper - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex: Yes I had co codamol after broken ribs which I think is a morphine derivative and I was thinking I was doing things like walking about while lying in bed and even if I carefully talked my way through getting out of bed and going to the window I was still in bed Frightening when my husband was away I stopped taking the pills in case i did do something stupid by telling myself I was imagining it! Never again.
simon c on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to mypyrex:

I have had a few people over the years having hallucinations, amongst other side effects. I work mostly in palliative care these days and there are other medications to use as Dauphin says, if its an ongoing issue I would have a chat with the staff and see what the other options are available, although they should be already aware of it. I can empathise in regard to UKC, it can be great help to sound off at times and just splurge thoughts. My father several years ago had a similar outcome and we tried to make the most of the limited time we had, many people were very kind on here and I never forgot it. Thoughts are with you all on this difficult time.
Jimbo W on 02 Apr 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

> My story is that for the first two nights after a major operation I had no problems with it, then on the third night I got into quite a disturbed state of mind, thinking that the patient in the bed opposite me was the Anti-Christ who was about to kill us all. It wasn't nice.

Unpleasant indeed! (Especially for one who doesn't believe in Christ ;)

> Through most of the next day I was ok, but when trying to get to sleep that night, whenever I closed my eyes my whole vision field was filled with an inky black oozing malevolence. Even though I was desperately in need of sleep, this was too nasty for me to close my eyes. At that point I called a nurse who reduced the dose to half, and I was then fine and fell asleep.

That does sound pretty horrible. The only other time I've had hallucinations was in the context of sleep deprivation due to shift work... or rather a lack of the shift ending irrespective of the so-called EWTD. That was equally scary, and lucky given that I was leaving work when they started.

> Would I be willing to take it again if needed? Yes, because it is utterly wonderful for pain relief, almost like magic. But I would take a more proactive approach to talking to the nurses about the dose level, and cutting it down at the first sign of issues.

Yes I would too. Mind you I've given it to patients in severe pain numerous times and it is a relief to witness their relief, if you see what I mean.
Angrypenguin - on 02 Apr 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:
> (In reply to Cameron94)
>
> The one thing I do wonder, though, is that given that the hallucinations that I suffered were rather nasty, why on earth does anyone take the stuff for pleasure??

I think that has a lot to do with what the hippies call 'set and setting'. Halucinations often reflect your mental status at the time. If you are relaxed and happy and mentally stable ones hallucinations are more likely to be pleasant. If you are in pain or in a bad mood this tends to be reflected in your hallucinations. This is why people with depression shouldn't take hallucinogens, or indeed alcohol really for that matter.

Not that I would take this stuff recreationally, although I didnt have hallucinations, morphine just made me unpleasantly zoned out for weeks when I broke my arms.
MG - on 02 Apr 2013
In reply to Jimbo W:
> (In reply to Coel Hellier)
>
> [...]
>
> Unpleasant indeed! (Especially for one who doesn't believe in Christ ;)
>


I was toying with the implications of Coel's hallucination too!
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tlm - on 02 Apr 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

> My story is that for the first two nights after a major operation I had no problems with it, then on the third night I got into quite a disturbed state of mind, thinking that the patient in the bed opposite me was the Anti-Christ who was about to kill us all. It wasn't nice.


Oooo!

An ex of mine was in hospital, and could hear the devil breathing around his bed, about to take his soul. So he jumped out of the window.

However, the window was shut! And it was on the second floor! He got a bit impaled on the way out, and then ran into some thorny bushes to try to lose the antichrist...

He saw some cars, but didn't want to wave them down in case the devil was in them, but then saw a lorry, and thought that would be OK, so he ran out into the road in his jim-jams, covered in scratches with blood pouring from a wound in his stomach...

The lorry took him to hospital to be stitched up and it was only really at this point that it dawned on him what sort of a hospital the original hospital was.....

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