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Side Effects of Morphine Sulfate ER

Notify your healthcare provider if you develop serious side effects of morphine sulfate ER, such as seizures, severe drowsiness, or confusion. In most cases, however, people tolerate the medication well and any side effects that occur are typically easy to treat. Common morphine sulfate ER side effects include constipation, nausea, and headaches. Other, less common side effects may include back pain, fever, and sexual side effects.

An Introduction to Side Effects of Morphine Sulfate ER

As with any medicine, morphine sulfate ER (Avinza®, Kadian®, MS Contin®, or Oramorph® SR) can cause side effects. However, not everyone who takes the medication will have problems. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are easily treated by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with morphine sulfate ER. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of morphine sulfate ER side effects with you.)

Serious Morphine Sulfate ER Side Effects

Some side effects of this medication, while usually occurring infrequently, are potentially serious and should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider. These include, but are not limited to:
  • The urge to take more morphine sulfate ER than prescribed or for a non-medical purpose
  • Falling or unsteadiness
  • Unusual changes in mood or behavior
  • Severe constipation
  • Confusion
  • A slow heart rate (bradycardia)
  • Difficulty passing urine
  • Low blood pressure (hypotension)
  • Slow or irregular breathing
  • Severe drowsiness
  • Seizures
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, such as:


    • An unexplained rash
    • Hives
    • Itching
    • Swelling of the mouth or throat
    • Wheezing
    • Difficulty breathing.


It is common to develop non-allergic itching due to morphine. Morphine causes a release of histamine, resulting in itching unrelated to any allergy. If you develop itching but no other allergy symptoms, it is unlikely that you are allergic to morphine sulfate ER. However, make sure to tell your healthcare provider, as there are medications available to help relieve the itching.
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Morphine Sulfate ER Medication

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