MS Contin ® contains Morphine Sulfate, a powerful and potent opiate antagonist (narcotic). MS Contin ® is used to treat moderate to severe pain and is only used for those who are opiate tolerant. MS Contin ® is intended for use of those who require both continuous and extended pain management treatment.

MS Contin ® can be injected both intramuscularly and intravenously and is also found in control released tablets. MS Contin ® is not to be taken as a PRN, or as needed. The use of MS Contin ® should be done under close supervision of a doctor or professional. MS Contin ® has a high potential for dependency and should not be taken in larger quantities or more frequently than prescribed.

Chronic pain sufferers use MS Contin, an opiate painkiller that is the time-released formula of morphine. MS Contin is the brand name for morphine sulfate, marketed by Purdue Pharma. Tablet and liquid formulas are available in the following doses: 15 mg, 20 mg, 30 mg, 60 mg, 100 mg and 200 mg. The two highest doses are prescribed for patients already tolerant to opiates and can cause fatal respiratory depression in those who aren’t tolerant. Because it is considered a strong narcotic pain reliever, MS Contin is usually prescribed for cancer patients or those who have suffered severe physical trauma. Similar formulas made and sold by other companies include Avinza and Kadian.

Manufacturer Warns Of Abuse, Misuse And Diversion

MS Contin is considered the “cousin” to OxyContin , also a powerful narcotic used to treat pain. A warning from the manufacturer says MS Contin has the potential for misuse, abuse, diversion and dependence. It is classified as a Schedule II controlled substance in the U.S. The federal Drug Enforcement Agency classifies drugs based on their potential to be habit-forming and cause abuse. The warning says MS Contin is to be swallowed whole, and pills broken, chewed, dissolved or crushed can release a potentially fatal dose of morphine. MS Contin should not be used with alcohol, as it could result in dangerous side effects or death. Patients are advised not to take a higher dose of MS Contin than what is prescribed by a doctor. The opiate should never be shared or used without a prescription, and caution should be used when driving or performing other tasks that require alertness. The powerful opiate may be harmful to fetuses and can cause addiction and powerful withdrawal symptoms in newborn babies. Because MS Contin can be passed through breast milk, women should talk to their doctors about alternatives before breast-feeding.

Side Effects Of Ms Contin/Withdrawal

For those who’ve taken more than the prescribed dosage or who don’t tolerate opiates, side effects can include clammy skin, shallow breathing, respiratory arrest, circulatory collapse or death.

Side effects with the prescribed dosage can include:

  • Impaired thinking or reactions
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Lightheadedness
  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nervousness or anxiety
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Hiccups

The physical and psychological discomfort of withdrawal is one of the main reasons people delay seeking treatment for an opiate addiction. Patients are likely to experience unpleasant side effects and/or powerful withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking MS Contin suddenly. Side effects could be intense anxiety, nausea, insomnia, fever, muscle pain and flu-like symptoms.

Treatment For Opiate Addiction

Detoxing from opiates can be difficult, especially in those who have used drugs for a long time, at high doses. Often it is difficult to stop using opiates without help. In-patient and out-patient treatment centers offer a variety of therapies for addiction. Depending on the severity and length of abuse, treatment could entail detox, rehabilitation and counseling.