morphine patch

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Definition - What does morphine patch mean?

A morphine patch is a medicinal adhesive laced with morphine that is placed on the skin on either the chest, back, side, or upper arm. Morphine patches are designed to administer a regulated amount of morphine through contact with the skin, which is then absorbed into the bloodstream. Morphine patches are an alternative to morphine pills or injections and can provide a more steady stream of substance into the bloodstream for continuous pain relief. Like many pain prescriptions, morphine patches can be abused.

SureHire explains morphine patch

A morphine patch is often used to substitute oral prescriptions, intravenous injection, and other traditional methods of treatment. Morphine patches can be more effective in their delivery of a steady and constant flow of opiate into the body. Morphine is a potent habit-forming analgesic (painkiller), and while addiction is considered rare, morphine patches can still be abused.

A single morphine patch can provide morphine for two to three days. However, patients can develop a physical tolerance with morphine patches, especially as the body grows accustomed to long-term use. Since morphine is classified as a narcotic, side effects such as drowsiness and confusion can impair normal cognitive function.

Morphine, as an opiate, will show on drug testing that includes opiate marker testing. Although morphine patches are a prescribed medicine, applicants and/or employees may be obligated to inform their employer of use, although there should be appropriate policies in place to protect the employee's or applicant's privacy in accordance with protected health information laws.

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