Common Opioid Induced Side Effects:
- Exacerbation of sleep apnea
- Impotence (men)
- Menstrual irregularities
- Hyperalgesia (worsening of pain without signs/symptoms of worsening disease)
- Rebound headaches (when plasma opioid levels decline)
- Impaired cognition/delirium
- Drug interactions: particularly drugs that may inhibit opioid metabolism or drugs that have effects similar to opioids (e.g.: benzodiazepines)
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Savage SR, Kirsch K, Passik S: Challenges in using opioids to treat pain in persons with substance use disorders. Addiction Science and Clinical Practice. 2008; 4(2): 4–25.
Maxwell J, McCance-Katz EF: Indicators of methadone and buprenorphine use and abuse: What do we know? Am J Addict, 19:73-88, 2010