TRAMADOL HYDROCHLORIDE (Page 2 of 12)

2.2 Initial Dosage

Initiating Treatment with Tramadol Hydrochloride Tablets

For patients not requiring rapid onset of analgesic effect, the tolerability of tramadol hydrochloride tablets can be improved by initiating therapy with a titration regimen. The total daily dose may be increased by 50 mg as tolerated every 3 days to reach 200 mg/day (50 mg four times a day). After titration, tramadol hydrochloride tablets 50 mg to 100 mg can be administered as needed for pain relief every 4 to 6 hours not to exceed 400 mg/day.

For the subset of patients for whom rapid onset of analgesic effect is required and for whom the benefits outweigh the risk of discontinuation due to adverse events associated with higher initial doses, tramadol hydrochloride tablets 50 mg to 100 mg can be administered as needed for pain relief every four to six hours, not to exceed 400 mg per day.

Conversion from Tramadol Hydrochloride Tablets to Extended-Release Tramadol

The relative bioavailability of tramadol hydrochloride tablets compared to extended-release tramadol is unknown, so conversion to extended-release formulations must be accompanied by close observation for signs of excessive sedation and respiratory depression.

Dosage Modification in Patients with Hepatic Impairment

The recommended dose for adult patients with severe hepatic impairment is 50 mg every 12 hours.

Dosage Modification in Patients with Renal Impairment

In all patients with creatinine clearance less than 30 mL/min, it is recommended that the dosing interval of tramadol hydrochloride tablets be increased to 12 hours, with a maximum daily dose of 200 mg. Since only 7% of an administered dose is removed by hemodialysis, dialysis patients can receive their regular dose on the day of dialysis.

Dosage Modification in Geriatric Patients

Do not exceed a total dose of 300 mg/day in patients over 75 years old.

2.3 Titration and Maintenance of Therapy

Individually titrate tramadol hydrochloride tablets to a dose that provides adequate analgesia and minimizes adverse reactions. Continually reevaluate patients receiving tramadol hydrochloride tablets to assess the maintenance of pain control and the relative incidence of adverse reactions, as well as to monitor for the development of addiction, abuse, or misuse [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.1)] . Frequent communication is important among the prescriber, other members of the healthcare team, the patient, and the caregiver/family during periods of changing analgesic requirements, including initial titration.

If the level of pain increases after dosage stabilization, attempt to identify the source of increased pain before increasing the tramadol hydrochloride tablets dosage. If unacceptable opioid-related adverse reactions are observed, consider reducing the dosage. Adjust the dosage to obtain an appropriate balance between management of pain and opioid-related adverse reactions.

2.4 Safe Reduction or Discontinuation of Tramadol Hydrochloride Tablets

Do not abruptly discontinue tramadol hydrochloride tablets in patients who may be physically dependent on opioids. Rapid discontinuation of opioid analgesics in patients who are physically dependent on opioids has resulted in serious withdrawal symptoms, uncontrolled pain, and suicide. Rapid discontinuation has also been associated with attempts to find other sources of opioid analgesics, which may be confused with drug-seeking for abuse. Patients may also attempt to treat their pain or withdrawal symptoms with illicit opioids, such as heroin, and other substances.

When a decision has been made to decrease the dose or discontinue therapy in an opioid-dependent patient taking tramadol hydrochloride tablets, there are a variety of factors that should be considered, including the dose of tramadol hydrochloride tablets the patient has been taking, the duration of treatment, the type of pain being treated, and the physical and psychological attributes of the patient. It is important to ensure ongoing care of the patient and to agree on an appropriate tapering schedule and follow-up plan so that patient and provider goals and expectations are clear and realistic. When opioid analgesics are being discontinued due to a suspected substance use disorder, evaluate and treat the patient, or refer for evaluation and treatment of the substance use disorder. Treatment should include evidence-based approaches, such as medication assisted treatment of opioid use disorder. Complex patients with comorbid pain and substance use disorders may benefit from referral to a specialist.

There are no standard opioid tapering schedules that are suitable for all patients. Good clinical practice dictates a patient-specific plan to taper the dose of the opioid gradually. For patients on tramadol hydrochloride tablets who are physically opioid-dependent, initiate the taper by a small enough increment, (e.g., no greater than 10% to 25% of the total daily dose) to avoid withdrawal symptoms, and proceed with dose-lowering at an interval of every 2 to 4 weeks. Patients who have been taking opioids for briefer periods of time may tolerate a more rapid taper.

It may be necessary to provide the patient with a lower dosage strength to accomplish a successful taper. Reassess the patient frequently to manage pain and withdrawal symptoms, should they emerge. Common withdrawal symptoms include restlessness, lacrimation, rhinorrhea, yawning, perspiration, chills, myalgia, and mydriasis. Other signs and symptoms also may develop, including irritability, anxiety, backache, joint pain, weakness, abdominal cramps, insomnia, nausea, anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, or increased blood pressure, respiratory rate, or heart rate. If withdrawal symptoms arise, it may be necessary to pause the taper for a period of time or raise the dose of the opioid analgesic to the previous dose, and then proceed with a slower taper. In addition, monitor patients for any changes in mood, emergence of suicidal thoughts, or use of other substances.

When managing patients taking opioid analgesics, particularly those who have been treated for a long duration and/or with high doses for chronic pain, ensure that a multimodal approach to pain management, including mental health support (if needed), is in place prior to initiating an opioid analgesic taper. A multimodal approach to pain management may optimize the treatment of chronic pain, as well as assist with the successful tapering of the opioid analgesic [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.17), Drug Abuse and Dependence ( 9.3)] .

3 DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS

Tramadol Hydrochloride Tablets USP, 50 mg are white, oval, film-coated tablets debossed with “ 101 ” on one side and “ OUYI ” on the other side.

4 CONTRAINDICATIONS

Tramadol hydrochloride tablets are contraindicated for:

  • all children younger than 12 years of age [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.4)] .
  • postoperative management in children younger than 18 years of age following tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.4)] .

Tramadol hydrochloride tablets are also contraindicated in patients with:

  • Significant respiratory depression [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.3)] .
  • Acute or severe bronchial asthma in an unmonitored setting or in the absence of resuscitative equipment [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.12)] .
  • Known or suspected gastrointestinal obstruction, including paralytic ileus [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.15)] .
  • Hypersensitivity to tramadol, any other component of this product or opioids [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.16)] .
  • Concurrent use of monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) or use within the last 14 days [see Drug Interactions ( 7)] .

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