Fentanyl is an opioid type pain medication that is used in the treatment of chronic pain and is also used for anesthesia and a variety of other purposes. The pain patches are designed to steadily release the Fentanyl gel over the course of three days. According to the FDA, Fentanyl is 80 times stronger than morphine, and should not be prescribed to patients who are not opioid-tolerant. For patients that have an opioid intolerance, even the smallest dose of the drug can prove extremely dangerous.
The Durgesic pain patch was released to the US in 1994. Since it was introduced to patients, makers of the Duragesic pain patch, as well as makers of the generic versions, have faced several defective drug lawsuits brought by patients alleging that the patches cause serious injuries and death.
Watson Pharmaceuticals makes the generic version of the popular fentanyl pain patch, Duragesic. In 2009, Watson Pharmaceuticals announced that it voluntarily recalled a batch of patches from the market.
There have been multiple recalls of the Duragesic pain patch, due to manufacturing issues that created defective patches. These defective patches have been reported to administer more of the drug into the blood stream than recommended.
Serious side effects may include:
- Weak or shallow breathing
- Pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating
- Feeling very thirsty or hot, being unable to urinate, heavy sweating, or hot and dry skin
Less serious side effects may include:
- Nausea, vomiting, constipation
- Dizziness, drowsiness
- Feeling weak or tired
- Swelling in your hands or feet
- Pain or mouth sores where the medicine was placed