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Nalbuphine

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Nalbuphine chemical structure
Nalbuphine

(-)-17-(cyclobutylmethyl)- 4,5α-epoxymorphinan- 3,6α,14-triol hydrochloride
IUPAC name
CAS number
20594-83-6
ATC code

N02AF02

PubChem
4419
DrugBank
APRD01132
Chemical formula {{{chemical_formula}}}
Molecular weight 357.443 g/mol
Bioavailability 81% @ 10mg and 83% @ 20 mg, intramuscular; 79% @ 10mg and 76% @ 20 mg subcutaneous
Metabolism 3 to 6 hours clinically, 5 hours in blood plasma
Elimination half-life
Excretion
Pregnancy category B
Legal status Legal
Routes of administration intravenous, intramuscular, subcutaneous


Nalbuphine (nalbuphine hydrochloride) is a synthetic opioid used commercially as an analgesic under a variety of trade names, including Nubain. It is noteworthy in part for the fact that at low dosages, it is found much more effective by women than by men, and may even increase pain in men,[1] leading to its discontinuation in the UK in 2003.

Clinical PharmacologyEdit

Nalbuphine is a synthetic narcotic agonist-antagonist analgesic of the phenanthrene series. It is chemically related to both the widely used narcotic antagonist, naloxone, and the potent narcotic analgesic, oxymorphone. It is available in two concentrations, 10 mg and 20 mg of nalbuphine hydrochloride per mL. Both strengths contain 0.94% sodium citrate hydrous, 1.26% citric acid anhydrous, 0.1% sodium metabisulfite, and 0.2% of a 9:1 mixture of methylparaben and propylparaben as preservatives; pH is adjusted, if necessary, with hydrochloric acid. The 10 mg/mL strength contains 0.1% sodium chloride.

Nalbuphine is also available in a sulfite and paraben-free formulation in two concentrations, 10 mg and 20 mg of nalbuphine hydrochloride per mL. One mL of each strength contains 0.94% sodium citrate hydrous, 1.26% citric acid anhydrous; pH is adjusted, if necessary, with hydrochloric acid. The 10 mg/mL strength contains 0.2% sodium chloride.

Nalbuphine is a potent analgesic. Its analgesic potency is essentially equivalent to that of morphine on a milligram basis. Its onset of action occurs within 2 to 3 minutes after intravenous administration, and in less than 15 minutes following subcutaneous or intramuscular injection. The plasma half-life of nalbuphine is 5 hours and in clinical studies the duration of analgesic activity has been reported to range from 3 to 6 hours.

The narcotic antagonist activity of Nalbuphine is one-fourth as potent as nalorphine and 10 times that of pentazocine.

IndicationEdit

Nalbuphine is indicated for the relief of moderate to severe pain. It can also be used as a supplement to balanced anesthesia, for preoperative and postoperative analgesia, and for obstetrical analgesia during labor and delivery.

Although Nalbuphine possesses narcotic antagonist activity, there is evidence that in nondependent patients it will not antagonize a narcotic analgesic administered just before, concurrently, or just after an injection. Therefore, patients receiving a narcotic analgesic, general anesthetics, phenothiazines, or other tranquilizers, sedatives, hypnotics, or other CNS depressants (including alcohol) concomitantly with Nalbuphine may exhibit an additive effect. When such combined therapy is contemplated, the dose of one or both agents should be reduced.

DosingEdit

The usual recommended adult dose is 10 mg for a 70 kg individual, administered subcutaneously, intramuscularly or intravenously; this dose may be repeated every 3 to 6 hours as necessary. Dosage should be adjusted according to the severity of the pain, physical status of the patient, and other medications which the patient may be receiving. In non-tolerant individuals, the recommended single maximum dose is 20 mg, with a maximum total daily dose of 160 mg.

The use of NUBAIN as a supplement to balanced anesthesia requires larger doses than those recommended for analgesia. Induction doses of NUBAIN range from 0.3 mg/kg to 3.0 mg/kg intravenously to be administered over a 10 to 15 minute period with maintenance doses of 0.25 to 0.50 mg/kg in single intravenous administrations as required.

In case of overdose or adverse reaction, the immediate intravenous administration of naloxone (Narcan) is a specific antidote. Oxygen, intravenous fluids, vasopressors and other supportive measures should be used as indicated.

Side EffectsEdit

The most frequent side effect in 1066 patients treated with nalbuphine was sedation 381 (36%).

Other, less frequent reactions are: feeling sweaty/clammy 99 (9%), nausea/vomiting 68 (6%), dizziness/vertigo 58 (5%), dry mouth 44 (4%), and headache 27 (3%). Other adverse reactions which may occur (reported incidence of 1% or less) are:

  • CNS effects: Nervousness, depression, restlessness, crying, euphoria, floating, hostility, unusual dreams, confusion, faintness, hallucinations, dysphoria, feeling of heaviness, numbness, tingling, unreality. The incidence of psychotomimetic effects, such as unreality, depersonalization, delusions, dysphoria and hallucinations has been shown to be less than that which occurs with pentazocine.
  • Cardiovascular: Hypertension, hypotension, bradycardia, tachycardia, pulmonary edema.
  • Gastrointestinal: Cramps, dyspepsia, bitter taste.
  • Respiration: Depression, dyspnea, asthma.
  • Dermatological: Itching, burning, urticaria.

Other possible, but rare side effects include speech difficulty, urinary urgency, blurred vision, flushing and warmth.

References Edit

  • Yuan-Yi Chia, Lok-Hi Chow, Chun-Chieh Hung, et al., Gender and pain upon movement are associated with the requirements for postoperative patient-controlled iv analgesia: a prospective survey of 2,298 Chinese patients, Canadian Journal of Anesthesia. 49:249-255 (2002)
  1. Gear, RW, Miaskowski C, Gordon NC, Paul SM, Heller PH, Levine JD (November 1999). The kappa opioid nalbuphine produces gender- and dose-dependent analgesia and antianalgesia in patients with postoperative pain. Pain 83 (2): 339–45.

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