Morphine (MS Contin) Nursing Considerations

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Generic Name


Trade Name

MS Contin


pain, pulmonary edema, MI


Binds to opiate receptors in the CNS and alters perception of pain while producing a general depression of the CNS.

Therapeutic Class

opioid analgesic

Pharmacologic Class

opioid agonist

Nursing Considerations

• may cause alterations in mentation, hypotension, constipation, nausea, vomiting
• assess BP, pulse, and respiratory rate prior to administration and frequently during administration
• use caution if patient is receiving MAO Inhibitors
• Narcan (naloxone) is the antidote for opioid agonists

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Hey guys, let’s talk about the drug morphine also known as MS Contin. This is an injectable medication, as you can see here by this vial, but it does come in a bunch of other forms. It can be given orally, in the epidural form, intrathecally, also in the rectal form. The therapeutic class of morphine or how it works in the body is an opioid analgesic while the pharmacologic glass or the chemical effect of morphine is an opioid agonist.

Morphine works by binding to opiate receptors in the central nervous system, which alters the perception of pain, producing general depression of the CNS. Morphine is used for pain. It’s used for pulmonary edema and also for the treatment of myocardial infarctions. Remember morphine causes depression of the CNS. So with this, we can see things like hypotension. Opioids in general can cause GI issues like constipation, nausea, and vomiting. Let’s take a look at some of the nursing considerations for morphine. In addition to the side effects already mentioned, morphine can cause alterations in mentation. So before and during the administration of morphine assess the patient’s blood pressure, pulse, and respiratory rates. You must use caution in patients who are also on MAOIs in the event of an overdose. The antidote for opioids is Narcan or Naloxone. Teach the patient to use as directed and also to report signs of a reaction, including hives, difficulty breathing, or facial swelling. Guys, morphine can cause histamine dumping from mast cells. It’s not really known why, but because of this, the patient can get phlebitis or also a rash, but this isn’t actually an allergy and the patient can still receive morphine. So be aware of this with morphine and recognize it if you need to. That’s it for morphine or MS Contin. Now go out and be your best self today. And as always happy nursing.

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