Morphine (Morphine sulfate 15mg/1ml solution for injection ampoules)



Information specific to: Morphine sulfate 15mg/1ml solution for injection ampoules when used in Palliative Care.

Morphine (More-feen sul-fate) is a medicine which is used in relieving severe pain, relieving breathing difficulties in certain types of lung problems and surgical procedures as a pre-medication.

The information in this Medicine Guide for morphine varies according to the condition being treated and the particular preparation used.

Your medicine

Morphine sulphate is a type of strong pain killer. It works by affecting chemicals in the nervous system which are involved in the sensation of pain. Morphine sulphate injection works quickly and is used to help relieve severe pain. Morphine sulphate may also be given to relieve certain types of breathing problems. It is also used before operations.

Morphine sulphate can cause physical and psychological dependence.

Other information about Morphine sulphate:

  • your prescriber may vary the dose of your medicine to find what is best for you

Morphine sulphate is usually given to you by a healthcare professional. The person responsible for giving you your medicine will make sure that you get the right dose.

If you feel that the medicine is making you unwell or you do not think it is working, then talk to your prescriber or someone involved in your medical care.

Whether this medicine is suitable for you

Morphine sulphate is not suitable for everyone and some people should never use it. Other people should only use it with special care. It is important that the person prescribing this medicine knows your full medical history.

Your prescriber may only prescribe this medicine with special care or may not prescribe it at all if you:

  • are allergic or sensitive to or have had a reaction to any of the ingredients in the medicine
  • are at risk of paralytic ileus
  • are debilitated
  • are elderly
  • are in shock
  • are intoxicated with alcohol
  • are obese
  • have a convulsive disorder
  • have adrenal gland problems
  • have asthma
  • have biliary problems
  • have bowel problems
  • have cor pulmonale
  • have diarrhoea caused by infection or poisoning
  • have head injuries
  • have high intracranial pressure
  • have hypothyroidism
  • have kidney problems
  • have liver problems
  • have low blood pressure
  • have lung problems
  • have misused drugs in the past
  • have phaeochromocytoma
  • have problems with your spine
  • have prostate problems
  • have respiratory depression
  • have urinary tract problems

Furthermore the prescriber may only prescribe this medicine with special care or may not prescribe it at all for a child or for someone who is in a coma.

Over time it is possible that Morphine sulphate can become unsuitable for some people, or they may become unsuitable for it. If at any time it appears that Morphine sulphate has become unsuitable, it is important that the prescriber is contacted immediately.


Alcohol can interact with certain medicines.

In the case of Morphine sulphate:

  • this medicine interacts with alcohol

You should seek advice from your prescriber as to whether you may drink alcohol while taking this medicine.


Medicines can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your prescriber may advise you to avoid certain foods.

In the case of Morphine sulphate:

  • there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when having Morphine sulphate

Driving and operating machinery

When taking any medicine you should be aware that it might interfere with your ability to drive or operate machinery safely.

In the case of Morphine sulphate:

  • this medicine could affect your ability to drive or operate machinery

You should see how this medicine affects you before you judge whether you are safe to drive or operate machinery. If you are in any doubt about whether you should drive or operate machinery, talk to your prescriber.

Family planning and pregnancy

Most medicines, in some way, can affect the development of a baby in the womb. The effect on the baby differs between medicines and also depends on the stage of pregnancy that you have reached when you take the medicine.

In the case of Morphine sulphate:

  • the use of this medicine during pregnancy is not recommended. You should only have this medicine during pregnancy if your doctor thinks that you need it
  • if you have this medicine during your pregnancy and labour, your baby may have some problems after birth. This may lead to your baby having withdrawal symptoms from Morphine sulphate after birth

You need to discuss your specific circumstances with your doctor to weigh up the overall risks and benefits of taking this medicine. You and your doctor can make a decision about whether you are going to take this medicine during pregnancy.

If the decision is that you should not have Morphine sulphate, then you should discuss whether there is an alternative medicine that you could take during pregnancy.


Certain medicines can pass into breast milk and may reach your baby through breast-feeding.

In the case of Morphine sulphate:

  • you should only have this medicine while breast-feeding if your doctor thinks you need it

Before you have your baby you should discuss breast-feeding with your doctor or midwife. They will help you decide what is best for you and your baby based on the benefits and risks associated with this medicine. You should only breast-feed your baby while taking this medicine on the advice of your doctor or midwife.

Taking other medicines

If you are taking more than one medicine they may interact with each other. At times your prescriber may decide to use medicines that interact, in other cases this may not be appropriate.

The decision to use medicines that interact depends on your specific circumstances. Your prescriber may decide to use medicines that interact, if it is believed that the benefits of taking the medicines together outweigh the risks. In such cases, it may be necessary to alter your dose or monitor you more closely.

Tell your prescriber the names of all the medicines that you are taking so that they can consider all possible interactions. This includes all the medicines which have been prescribed by your GP, hospital doctor, dentist, nurse, health visitor, midwife or pharmacist. You must also tell your prescriber about medicines which you have bought over the counter without prescriptions.

The following medicines may interact with Morphine sulphate:

  • atropine
  • ciprofloxacin
  • domperidone
  • kaolin
  • linezolid
  • loperamide
  • metoclopramide
  • mexiletine
  • moclobemide
  • pethidine
  • selegiline

The following types of medicine may interact with Morphine sulphate:

  • antiarrhythmics
  • antibacterials
  • antidepressants
  • antidiarrhoeal medicines
  • antimuscarinics
  • antiperistaltic medicines
  • antipsychotics
  • anxiolytics
  • hypnotics
  • medicines which depress the CNS
  • monoamine oxidase inhibitors
  • sedative antihistamines
  • tricyclic antidepressants

If you are taking Morphine sulphate and one of the above medicines or types of medicines, make sure your prescriber knows about it.

Complementary preparations and vitamins

Medicines can interact with complementary preparations and vitamins. In general, there is not much information available about interactions between medicines and complementary preparations or vitamins.

If you are planning to take or are already taking any complementary preparations and vitamins you should ask your prescriber whether there are any known interactions with Morphine sulphate.

Your prescriber can advise whether it is appropriate for you to take combinations that are known to interact. They can also discuss with you the possible effect that the complementary preparations and vitamins may have on your condition.

If you experience any unusual effects while taking this medicine in combination with complementary preparations and vitamins, you should tell your prescriber.

Content provided by Datapharm